It’s Dementia Action week on Monday 21st May – Sunday 27th May this year. There are over 850,000 people in England living with dementia, a number which is expected to rise to over one million by 2025. We are in need now more than ever to improve care and to greater understand people living with the disease. Thousands of events will be taking place up and down the UK with the aim to raise awareness and reach as many people as possible.
Previously known as Dementia Awareness Week, this year Alzheimer’s Society have coined the term ‘Dementia Action Week’ with a mission to make changes happen for people affected by dementia. In the UK, one person develops dementia every three minutes, yet so many people face the condition alone without adequate support.
Whilst raising awareness and support will always be important, but it’s time for action. This Dementia Action Week, Alzheimer’s Society is asking people to unite and take actions big and small to make a difference in the everyday lives of people with dementia. From continuing to invite them out to making sure you listen and include them in conversations, these small actions will help make a big difference.
Active Minds are a company who design activities to help people living with dementia and those caring for them lead active lives. Advocates for the use of activities to reduce isolation and depression for people suffering from Alzheimer’s. Ben Atkinson-Willes founded Active Minds after experiencing first-hand the difficulties that carers face when his grandfather was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.
Founder, Ben Atkinson-Willes explains:
“As my grandfather became less mobile, he became a jigsaw enthusiast. As his ability to complete puzzles diminished, he turned to children’s puzzles. This situation is reflected in many care homes, with children’s activities being used or carers having to devise their own. As a designer, I decided that this was the time for action, I used my skills alongside the experience of those in the care sector to develop activities capable of delivering age-appropriate dementia care.”
Active Minds have released a series of online activity guides to provide free advice and ideas for people living with dementia, which are available at www.active-minds.org/news/.
To get involved this Dementia Action Week and unite against dementia, visit alzheimers.org.uk/DAW