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Cathedral of St John the Baptist Trust

Now a Grade 1 listed building, the Cathedral of St John the Baptist is one of Norwich’s iconic buildings, rising above the city skyline. Its external grandeur and magnificent interior, especially the fine stonework and beautiful stained glass make it well worth a visit for those interested in architectural history; they will also find an inspiring and tranquil place of prayer. In addition to its role as the Mother Church of the Diocese of East Anglia the Cathedral supports a large and vibrant parish, with some 1200 regular worshippers and many thousands of visitors each year. The opening in 2010 of the new Narthex provided a focus for a wide range of community activities, educational programmes and many more opportunities for volunteering.

1 December 2017
East of England
Arts, Children Young People and Students, Community organisations, Education Sector, Faith Groups, Hospitality, Schools, Voluntary, Voluntary Sector
Local Alliances:
Norwich City 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?

St John's Cathedral and its adjoined visitor's centre The Narthex welcome visitors and worshippers of all ages, backgrounds and faiths through its doors. We aim to join the Dementia Awareness Alliance to champion St John's, and Norwich as a Dementia Friendly location. We will ensure our guides, welcomers and staff are trained to communicate well with people living with Dementia, and that we make the Cathedral and The Narthex inviting, accessible and usable for people with Dementia and their carers, as well as a happy and safe space. 

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

Getting staff and clergy on board to complete the training with their busy schedules is one challenge of ensuring front of house individuals are trained in Dementia awareness. 

2. Actions

  • Join the Norwich City Dementia Action Alliance

    The Cathedral of St John the Baptist Trust including the church and the Narthex will join the local Norwich City Dementia Action Alliance to begin our journey into becoming a Dementia Friendly location so that people living with Dementia and their carers feel safe and welcomed when visiting us.

    Being implemented
  • Train front line staff in Dementia Awareness

    The front line staff, volunteers and guides of The Narthex and St John's Cathedral will receive the session to become a dementia friend to understand what small and everyday changes to make so as to make the space as welcoming and accessible as possible for people living with Dementia. 

    Nine staff have already received the session and will use this to be aware of who may be living with Dementia amongst the Cathedral's visitors, and in what ways they can make the visit more enjoyable and calming for these people living with Dementia, as well as their carers. They also now understand how to talk to, and about, people living with Dementia to create a more inclusive environment.

    The core staff have completed the session and over the coming weeks more people from the parish who are involved with visitors, and more of the clergy will become a Dementia Friend. 

    This way more and more individuals at the Cathedral will become Dementia Friends as part of the Dementia Friendly scheme.

  • Establish a Dementia Champion at St John's

    The Culture and Heritage Officer who is based at The Narthex and works throughout the centre and the Cathedral, will become a Dementia Friends Champion for the organisation. This person will be trained in delivering the Dementia Friends session to staff, existing and new, so that the quality and scope of awareness within the organisation is maintained and continued. This Dementia Champion will also promote the Dementia Friendly scheme wherever possible, including using the DAA badge and putting the logo on the website.

  • Update the Cathedral website with Dementia Awareness Information

    The Dementia Champion will ensure that a wider audience and those people visiting Norwich will be able to see through the St John's website that we are a Dementia Friendly location. The website will show the logo of DAA and will state that front line staff are trained for Dementia Awareness.