Rotarians Easing Problems of Dementia - Rotary Clubs in Peterborough

REPoD (Rotarians Easing Problems of Dementia) is a nationwide network for Rotary Clubs and Rotarians who believe that it is time to take direct action within their own communities to provide practical help and support to families who are living with dementia.

8 December 2017
East of England
Voluntary Sector
Local Alliances:
Peterborough Dementia Action Alliance

1. Action Plan

1. The National Dementia Declaration lists a number of outcomes that we 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?

The Crocus Café is a Memory Café operated by the Peterborough Rotary Clubs.  It offers in an informal café style setting, an opportunity for those affected by memory problems and their carers to meet and socialise.  It will operate on a 'drop-in' basis and be free to users.  It gives those attending the chance to take part in activities which stimulate memories, entertain and are, above all, fun.  The Crocus Café provides entertainment, practical information and emotional support.  The main aim is to reduce the isolation often felt by people with dementia, their carers and families. Carers will be on hand, in the same room, at all times to oversee the safety and well being of their partners. We hope many people will make friendships as a result and be able to support each other outside of the Memory Café setting.  We are working in alliance with Peterborough City Council, Alzheimer Peterborough and Age UK.

Peterborough’s Memory Cafe could contribute to four of the seven desired outcomes described in the National Dementia Declaration.

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

Rotary is an organisation relying on volunteers.  Potential challenges which lie ahead include retaining the commitment of volunteers with appropriate skills to lead and support activities at the Memory Cafe. Included in this challenge are:

  • Retaining our highly suitable accommodation which currently provides a friendly and safe environment for a Memory Café - small enough to be cosy but with room for expansion.  We have space for 30-40 people (service users, volunteers), free parking, free/minimal rent, easily accessible entrance/exit/toilets, dedicated space closed off from general public/ other users.
  • Planning appropriate activities. Engaging professional arts practitioners to provide activities or arranging for local professionals to give presentations and offer advice.  Finding activities suitable for the broad spectrum of age and degree of dementia who may attend.
  • Refreshments (tea/coffee, cakes and biscuits) are a feature of our 'cafe', another challenge is to fund this long term. Although refreshments are simple, care must be taken to avoid nut allergies and to ensure coeliacs are not offered items containing gluten.
  • Should the café prove to be popular – issues of crowding also balancing the need to welcome all against maintaining our personal touch.
  • A popular café could become a noisy café that may deter some people. Our challenge will to get the balance right
  • Should the dynamics of our delivery change, and carers meet in a separate room, protection issues will need to be addressed.
  • Our main challenge is to lead a project that will contribute to making Peterborough a dementia friendly community

2. Actions

  • Researching the needs of our visitors

    Our visitors living with dementia will continue to be consulted to ascertain their current requirements.  Needs of those with dementia and their carers will continue to be taken into account when planning our activities. We aim to stimulate and entertain. Visits and outings add to the breadth of the provision.


    2013 - Third Quarter Update

    New Member

  • Taking advice from our partners

    Dementia awareness for our volunteers was provided by Dementia UK (Peterborough).  Chairman Janet Cooke completed the 1-day dementia champion training,is a regular attender at Peterborough Action Alliance meetings and currently Vice Chairman. She delivers talks on dementia and Crocus Cafe to other Rotary Clubs and local organisations.

    Staff at Dementia UK continue to support, help and advise.


    2013 - Third Quarter Update

  • Sustainability

    Peterborough City Council and Rotary provided start up funding.

    Several Rotary Clubs continue to be involved increasing the potential for volunteers and meeting our running costs. Other members of the alliance have provided donations along with Waitrose and Dobbies.

    Salvation Army continue to be fully supportive and currently providing rent free accommodation and parking


    2013 - Third Quarter Update

    New Member

  • Increase the range of activities and scope of the Memory Cafe

    We provide additional opportunities for the group of members to meet together and enjoy each others company.  Outings three to four times a year. We have visited Ferry Meadows, the Key Theatre (old time music hall and pantomime), attended a 1940s concert and enjoyed a trip on Nene Valley Railway.  Members meet for a Xmas meal.  Interaction with other generations are encouraged - a local primary school sings carols and Xmas songs at our December meeting and a secondary school provides an annual afternoon tea prepeared by hospitality students. Hands on activities are encouraged such as our annual bulb planting, decorating Eater eggs and painting that have been incorporated in the programme.

    Being implemented

    2016 - First Quarter Update

    Update on activities