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Wessex Water

The Bristol and Bath area in the north west has a population of around 750,000 and in the south east the Bournemouth and Poole area has about 300,000 residents. Our aim is to give all customers excellent standards of service by providing high quality water and environmental services that protect health, improve the environment and give customers good value for money. We are recognised by the water industry regulator Ofwat as one of the most efficient water and sewerage companies in England and Wales. Our customers are at the heart of everything we do and we are committed to providing help when it’s needed the most. While many people don’t like to consider themselves as vulnerable and often think the term would never relate to them, the reality is that anyone can become vulnerable at any time. This can have short or long-term effects and be due to literacy, illness, unemployment or a sudden change in circumstances, such as a bereavement or divorce. We believe in treating customers as individuals and tailoring our help to suit their needs, in a way that is inclusive and accessible. This is done by empowered and highly trained staff with strong customer care values.

25 May 2021
South West
Local Alliances:
Patchway Dementia Action Alliance , Poole Dementia Action Group, Wimborne Dementia Friendly Community, Dorchester Dementia Action Alliance, Portishead Dementia Action Alliance, Bristol Dementia Action Alliance, Corfe Mullen Dementia Action Alliance, Ilminster Dementia Friendly Community, South Gloucestershire Dementia Action Alliance, Sherborne & District Dementia Action Alliance, North Somerset Dementia Action Alliance, City of Wells Dementia Action Alliance, Bridgwater Dementia Action Alliance, Radstock Dementia Action Alliance, Calne Community Area , Frome Dementia Action Alliance, Taunton Dementia Action Alliance, Bath & North East Somerset, Bradford on Avon, Melksham Community Area, Devizes Community Area Dementia Action Alliance, Ferndown Dementia Friendly Community, Salisbury Community Area, Dorset Dementia Friendly Churches, Trowbridge Community Area Dementia Action Alliance, Keynsham & Saltford Dementia Action Alliance, Wellington Dementia Action Alliance, Corsham Community Area, Malmesbury Community Area Dementia Action Alliance, Dementia Friendly Bournemouth, Wincanton Dementia Action Alliance, Warminster Community Area Dementia Action Alliance, Langport Dementia Action Alliance, Burnham & Highbridge 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?

Wessex Water's role in helping to deliver better outcomes for those living with Dementia and those caring for these people is vital. In order to achieve this we ensure that we undertake a programme of training within our business, educating our customer facing colleagues on how to identify and approach someone they believe has dementia as well as offering our staff who have a family member with dementia the support they need.

For our customers, we have our Priority Services register and we ensure that this is promoted at every opportunity, this could be via our social media channels, on our website or at local events. We are starting signposting trials with other companies in the industry and also making alliances with other agencies to provide a joined up service for our customers in vulnerable circumstances.

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

Our current challenge would be getting the message out to the right members of staff in our large organisation and providing the right level of training for them. Following that our other biggest challenge would be to ensure that our customers and partners are aware of the support we offer. Its also a challenge to ensure we work with all the DAA and DFC in our area to provide localised support.

Member website


2. Actions

  • All Customer facing staff to become Dementia Friends

    Run Dementia Friends session in various locations during lunch time for those who want and are able to attend a face to face session and become Dementia Friends.

    Staff who haven’t attended a face to face session will watch the introductory Dementia Friends video followed by a situation-specific video. We will then report back the numbers to the Alzheimer's Society on a regular basis, so they can send out Dementia Friend badges and info cards.

    We will ensure that new starters are made aware of the videos when they join the company and if possible include this in induction sessions.

    Being implemented

    2021 - First Quarter Update

    we are currently at 1908 staff trained as dementia friends. our goal is 2000 which we aim to have completed by summer 2021.

    2019 - Second Quarter Update

    We are still continuing with our dementia friends target of making all our staff dementia friends in 2020. We currently have 1300 staff signed up as a dementia friend.

    We now have an e-learning module where staff can log on anytime and any place to complete and become a dementia friend. We are also working closely with the Alzheimers society to ensure our content is up to date.

    2018 - Fourth Quarter Update

    We now have 844 Dementia Friends across the Business.

    We plan to nclude information in company induction packs as well as our specailised customer servcie training course 'Going the Extra Mile'  links to our internal e learning system will be issued to all new starters asking them to watch the Dementia Friends videos.

    We aim for all staff to be Demenita Friends by 2020.

    2017 - Third Quarter Update

    We currently now have 150 staff who are trained as Dementia Friends and we are aiming to get 500 trained by the end of the year.

    2017 - Second Quarter Update

    We are encourgaing all our staff to become Dementia Friends in Dementia Awareness Week 2017 by watching the Dementia Friends videos on our internal social media platform.

  • Have a Dementia section in our new vulnerbility policy

    We have recently written a new policy that covers all the support we offer customers who may have extra needs. A Dementia/memory loss seciton has been included. It has been endorsed by dementia friends and alzheimers society. We will continue to review this document every 12 months to ensure that the document stays up to date.


    2021 - First Quarter Update

    this stratergy has recently been reviewed and we have added in some extra dementia awareness training provided by training 2 care

    2018 - Third Quarter Update

    We released our new stratergy for customers in vulernable circumstances 'every customer matters' this includes our ambitions to become a Demenita Friendly Utility and information on how we support those livign with Dementia.

  • Work with other organisation to encourgae Dementia Friendly organisations

    We are an active member of the British Gas task force aimed at encouraging utilities to become dementia friendly and feature in the Dementia Friendly Utilities guide

  • To review all our signage to ensure that it is dementia friendly

    Review all our current signage to ensure that font, colours and size are all dementia friendly and to ensure that all new signage is also reviewed in the same way.


    2017 - Third Quarter Update

    Signage review has now been completed for some sites whilst others are still going through a review.

  • To ensure that all our public sites are dementia friendly

    Review all of our sites that are open to the public such as our fishing lakes and reservoirs, treatment work open days and the reception in our operation center are all dementia friendly and easily accessible. We will also continue to look at new ways to improve these sites for customers with dementia.

    Being implemented

    2019 - Third Quarter Update

    We are still reviewing all our sites to ensure that they are dementia friendly. Some sites have been completed. Our community team are working with the Alzheimers society to ensure we make our sites dementia friendly as possible

    2017 - Third Quarter Update

    This is currently being reviewed and scoped out as part of our customer transformation project.

  • Update our Priority Services Register

    Update our policy for customers to include address details for the Alzheimer's Society and Capture the need Dementia if a customer wants to register for that reason.


    2018 - Fourth Quarter Update

    We now include the need 'Dementia' so that customers can register under that need.

    2017 - Third Quarter Update

    We are currently scoping out the review of our PSR booklet

    2017 - First Quarter Update

    We have changed the name of our additonal help to Priority Services inline with the Energy and telecoms industry

  • To ensure that all our staff have access to dementia information

    To provide our staff, who may be living with dementia or have a family member or friend living with dementia, access to information and support via our HR department.


    2017 - Third Quarter Update

    This has now been completed. We also put regular information for staff about Dementia on our internal social media sites and internal intranet. We also provide extra information and awarness at events such as Dementia awareness week.

  • To add dementia onto our Priority Services Register

    We will add dementia/memory loss onto our criteria list for customers to select when joining our Priority Services register


    2016 - Fourth Quarter Update

    We have added Dementia/memory loss to our internal systems and next plan to update our customer policy forms.

  • Use Social Media to back the Dementia Friends campaign

    Tweet about the campaign during Dementia Awareness week


    2017 - Third Quarter Update

    We have an internal social media platform called Yammer that we post regular content on about dementia awareness, including when staff members become dementia friends.

    2017 - Second Quarter Update

    We are supporting Dementia Awareness Week 2017 via internal and external social media