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Horsforth Town Council

Horsforth Town Council is a first-tier local government Council, with General Power of Competence. It consists of 22 democratically elected Councillors. It is a forum and focus for the township of Horsforth. It liaises with the next tier of local government, i.e. Leeds City Council ( provider of most council services), with statutory services, with voluntary organisations and commercial business to monitor and organise community, environmental, planning and safety matters in the town. It gives financial support to voluntary groups and societies for the education, entertainment and well-being of our citizens, and organises several community events. The Town Council has contributed to Horsforth becoming recognised as a Child-Friendly Community and a Fair Trade Town.

3 December 2015
Yorkshire and Humber
Local Alliances:
Leeds 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?

As the statutory local government body at the heart of the community , Horsforth Town Council is uniquely placed in established networks of organisations. It has respected status and an influential voice in the community. Working with existing members of the Alliance in our locality, we are in a strong influential position to raise awareness about dementia and to promote dementia-friendly policies in local organisations and businesses.  We can use our influence to encourage representatives of organisations, to join with our own representative(s), in forming a steering group to work towards recognition as a Dementia Friendly Community. We can encourage and model dementia friendly policies, helping to ensure that the views of people with dementia are heard and attended to. We can act as a hub to liaise with, learn from and cooperate in providing services with existing members of the Alliance and existing Dementia Champions within our town.

2. What are the challenges to delivering these outcomes from the perspective of your organisation?

At present we have limited expertise amongst our personnel in understanding the needs of people with dementia and in serving those needs.  We have limited resources for devising, delivering and monitoring appropriate strategies. We may meet resistance from businesses who may not see the benefit of getting involved There is a risk of creating stigma and patronising behaviour by “identifying” or “labelling” people with dementia .

We must work in partnership with local experts and volunteers, taking advice and training, and work slowly and sensitively.  We must avoid being over-ambitious and make progress through SMART objectives. We need to devise low-cost strategies for ourselves and for other organisations to implement

2. Actions

  • Designate a Dementia Friendly Leader (DFL)

    The Town Council will nominate a Councillor to lead the Dementia Friendly initiative. Dementia-Friendly Community will become a standing item on Town Council meeting agendas for the DFL to report progress.
    The DFL will register to become a Dementia Friend and Dementia Friends Champion and undertake a Day Induction course. On satisfactory completion, and acceptance as a Dementia Friends Champion, the title of the DFL for Town Council purposes will be changed to Dementia Friendly Champion. The DFL will strengthen existing contact with other relevant organisations, e.g. Horsforth Live at Home, Trinity University, Morrisons Supermarket, Churches Together.

  • Improve our understanding of Dementia and to challenge stigma around Dementia.

    The DFL will arrange 45-minute Dementia Awareness sessions to be given by a local Dementia Champion.  Councillors and Staff will be encouraged to attend a session to ensure greater understanding of the condition and how we can help., and to identify as Dementia Friends.

    We will arrange similar sessions and invite representatives  of local businesses and organisations to attend.

  • Develop a Dementia-Friendly Network in Horsforth

    The DFL (Councillor) will identify relevant categories of organisations and specific organisations within each category  to inform about the National Dementia Declaration and how they might contribute to implement it.  We will circulate this information to the identified organisations and invite feedback.  We will establish a register of organisations committed to the Horsforth network and attempt to co-ordinate practices which reflect the principles of the National Dementia Declaration .

    The Dementia-Friendly initiative will be publicised in the Town Council publications and on-line sites

    We will work with other organisations , eg. co-operate with Horsforth Live at Home to  offer  the 45 minute dementia awareness training sessions to business personnel at convenient times;  delegate to  University student volunteers to link with  younger people’s organisations. Encourage practical actions such as shop front businesses displaying relevant cards ; issuing “Help” cards to people with dementia (and other disabilities); improve signage in windows and public buildings. Challenge the stigma around dementia by actively encouraging people with dementia to participate in community events.

  • Apply for recognition of the town of Horsforth as a Dementia Friendly Community

    In the light of experience , formalise a local structure to maintain a sustainable dementia friendly community, and develop a long-term strategy. We will set up a Dementia Friendly Community Steering Group, independent of the Town Council, to develop Horsforth towards Dementia Friendly recognition.  The Council will have one or more Councillors (including the Dementia-Friendly Leader) as representatives on this Group.  Other interested bodies will be invited to delegate members to the Group.

    As an independent Group it will be eligible to apply for a financial grant from the Town Council.

    Apply for recognition as a Dementia Friendly Community, by demonstrating fulfilment of the foundation criteria:

    1.The right local structure in place to maintain a sustainable dementia friendly community.

    2.An identified person /people to take responsibility for driving forward the work to support community to become dementia friendly

    3.A Plan to raise awareness about dementia in key local organisations and businesses

    4. Develop a strong voice for people with dementia living in the communities, to focus the Plan on areas people with dementia feel are most important

    5.Raise the profile of the work to increase reach and awareness to different groups

    Having set up an independent Steering Group, Horsforth Town Council will remain a member of the Alliance. It will continue to support the Steering Group and delegate Councillors to the Group. Horsforth Town Council will publicise the status of Horsforth as a Dementia-Friendly Community.