Alzheimer's Society - Essex locality
Alzheimer’s Society is the UK’s leading dementia support and research charity. We provide services, fund research and advise health and social care professionals. Working nationally and locally, we campaign for improved care and greater awareness and understanding of dementia.
- 26 October 2015
- East of England
- Charity, Research Sector, Voluntary Sector
- Local Alliances:
- Pan Essex Dementia Action Alliance
1. Action Plan
1. The National Dementia Declaration lists seven outcomes that the DAA are seeking to achieve for people with dementia and their carers. How would you describe your organisation’s role in delivering better outcomes for people with dementia and their carers?
Alzheimer's Society is theUK's leading support, care and research charity for people with dementia, their families and carers. We provide information and support for those with any form of dementia and their carers. We advise and train professionals working in the field, fund research, run quality support and care services, and campaign for improved health and social care and greater public understanding of dementia.
We work in partnership with others to ensure that support is always there for people with dementia and that people receive a timely diagnosis, that the condition is understood and that people with dementia have the same rights as other members of society. We will achieve this through funding scientific breakthroughs, strengthening communities by increasing understanding of the needs of people with dementia and the contribution of carers and striving to put an end to discrimination and stigma.
2. What are the challenges to delivering these outcomes from the perspective of your organisation?
Dementia is higher on the public and political agenda than it has ever been. We have seen action acrossEnglandto begin implementing the National Dementia Strategy. The task at hand now is to use that strong position and build on the momentum achieved by creating a broad church of individuals and organisations committed to action.
Public awareness of dementia is rising but understanding about dementia is poor. There is limited public appreciation that it is possible to live well with dementia and to make big differences to quality of life for people with dementia and their carers. Poor understanding is something common among the general public as well as people working in health and social care services.
People with dementia are diagnosed too late and families often report not receiving the information and support they need to begin living well with dementia. People with dementia often face social isolation and poor outcomes.
There is a limited amount of funding going into dementia research compared to other major disease groups like cancer.
In a difficult economic climate we need to clearly make the case for action on dementia to achieve better outcomes in a cost effective way.
Most importantly we need to work with people with dementia, their carers and families to understand what matters most to them in order to transform quality of life for all people living with dementia.
Champion Public Understanding of Dementia
We will champion public understanding of dementia through national and local awareness campaigns, and by supporting people with dementia to speak out and tell their own stories. We will organise, promote and engage in dementia awareness events across Essex.
During national Dementia Awareness Week, we hold events, distribute information and present talks across Essex.
Our Dementia Roadshow bus enables the general public to speak to Society staff and provide information to help people understand the disease, whether they are a person with dementia, a family member or carer, or someone who is worried about their memory.
We will work collaboratively with other partner organisations to provide Dementia Friends sessions to ensure that Essex becomes a dementia friendly county.
We will continue to provide information and awareness talks to community groups, health and social care professionals, housing associations, voluntary organisations and interested parties to raise awareness and reduce stigma.
Our local volunteer campaigning group will champion key national and local campaigns with planned campaigning activities.
Our staff will support anyone affected by dementia, and provides relevant and up to date information enabling them to understand the illness.
Develop Quality Information and Support Services
We will continue to develop, enhance and evaluate our information and support services for people with dementia, their carers and families.
Our universal services: the National website, helpline and our online support and discussion forum are accessible to everyone.
We will continue to provide local information and support services for the people of Essex. Our Dementia Support Service provides one to one support to people with dementia, carers and family members and is unique to personal circumstances. The service provides information and practical support to help greater understanding about dementia, and to support service users with dementia.
Our Peer Support Groups open to people with dementia and their carers offers the opportunity to engage with and support others in a similar situation. Cognitive Stimulation Groups for people with dementia works to retain recall and develop strategies
All services will be reviewed and evaluated to ensure we continue to provide needs lead services and support, promoting choice and control.
Our Service User Involvement Champions will seek the views of our clients through a variety of engagement influencing all aspects of the Society’s work. Seeking feedback on the services they receive in order to monitor quality and inform service development at a local level to involvement in influencing the future direction of the Society
Our Service User Review Panel members will meet regularly to discuss and review a range of topics that may include: organisational tools, such as forms and questionnaires, informational materials such as leaflets and posters and priorities for service or strategic development, such as Dementia Friendly Communities.
2015 - Fourth Quarter Update
Improve the Skills of the Dementia Care Workforce
We will continually improve the skills and of our workforce. Training is the ‘development of an informed, engaged, professional and motivated workforce with each individual capable of and empowered to make a positive and lasting contribution to people living with dementia.’ It is our aim to build our workforce to feel valued, have pride in the work they do and are capable and empowered to make a difference’.
Identifying staff and volunteers training requirements ensuring all mandatory and role specific training is undertaken.
Using our three local approved trainers to deliver training in the county on a regular basis ensures we are complying with our quality standards that are mapped to the Qualifications and Credit Framework.
Campaign for Fairer Deals
We will work with people with dementia, their carers and families to campaign for a fairer deal on the issues that matter to them - early diagnosis, access to the right care and treatment, and investment in dementia research - and ensure their needs are recognised by decision makers at national and local level.
To champion the diversity of Essex
In Essex we are committed to extending our reach to those hard to reach communities providing information in accessible and culturally appropriate formats.
Our Volunteering Officer will recruit volunteers who reflect the communities in Essex ensuring we engage and support those people with dementia, carers and family members that in the past have been difficult to reach
We will work with our partners to raise awareness of dementia ensuring we engage and support those people with dementia, carers and family members that in the past have been difficult to reach.
All society literature is available in a variety of languages, and formats including Audio, Braille, CD.
Work collaboratively with other members of the DAA
To work with other members of the local Dementia Action Alliance and the Dementia Steering group, sharing good practice, knowledge and skills.
To raise awareness of the DAA and the work we do to organisations and businesses across Essex. We will encourage and support them to become members of the local alliance and produce their own action plans. Ensuring that dementia and carers needs are high on everyone’s agenda.
2015 - Fourth Quarter Update
Dementia Supportive Communities
National Alzheimer’s Society initiatives such as: Dementia Friends, Dementia Action Alliance and Dementia Friendly Communities all seek community engagement as a key element of their success, promoting awareness, dispelling myths and reducing stigma working towards radically improving the lives of people living with dementia. The local Society staff and volunteer team will work closely with commissioners and partners in Essex to achieve this vision.
2015 - Fourth Quarter Update