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Led by our Community Development Coordinators, our service has been working closely with our local Deaf community to understand their barriers in accessing advice and support.
As a result, we have taken a number of actions, including working with the Specialised Deaf Service to produce a unique pathway to ensure we jointly work with this service in undertaking diagnostics. Deaf/BSL service users can now use a self-referral pathway to access our service.
We have also produced an Easy Read version of our Service Leaflet, which can be found here (or by clicking the title of this article).
And finally, we have also produced a BSL version of the Service Leaflet which you can find in the video below:
Do you want to tell other people about dementia and what it is like?
Do you want to break-down myths about dementia and encourage people to talk
more openly about it?
If so, come and help us make a dementia podcast and reach as many people as possible!
We are looking for eight people who are affected by dementia
You could be someone living with a diagnosis of dementia or a supporter / carer of someone living with dementia
We will offer training and support you through the making of the podcast
The project will take place in March and early April 2022
Please apply by 14th February 2022. You can click on the title of this news item, and you can dowload, print, complete and return if you are interested.
Do you want to break-down myths about dementia and encourage people to talk more openly about it?
Please apply by 14th February 2022. You can click the title of this news item and it will take you to a form which you can print, complete and return.
UPDATE: Coronavirus Vaccine. The Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine is effective, safe and gives you the best possible protection. To learn more about the vaccine view the NHS website: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/coronavirus-vaccine/
COVID 19 / Coronavirus – We want to reassure everyone that although the Dementia Wellbeing Service has adapted its service delivery following government advice, our Access Point remains open to take your calls. Our Access Point is open Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm. Please call 0117 904 5151. Whether you are already supported by our service or if you have a Bristol GP and have concerns about dementia, we are here for you.
Coronavirus Advice: please see the NHS page for the latest updates and advice relating to the Coronavirus: www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/
NHS Guidance relating to vulnerable older adults: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-guidance-on-social-distancing-and-for-vulnerable-people/guidance-on-social-distancing-for-everyone-in-the-uk-and-protecting-older-people-and-vulnerable-adults
Age UK have also provided advice, including what to do if someone you care for is self isolating: https://www.ageuk.org.uk/information-advice/health-wellbeing/conditions-illnesses/coronavirus/
Avon & Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership Trust (AWP) have produced a set of resource on Coping Strategies for Anxious Times which is available in a range of languages.
Click on the title above or click here for further information about the Long Ashton Memory Cafe.
Researchers in the UK have been working with Alzheimer’s Europe to develop a database of resources for people with dementia from different BAME communities. The website is now live and may be helpful for various community groups. A number of our own resources (such as our short films on our homepage) are also featured.
This can be accessed at: https://www.alzheimer-europe.org/Ethics/Database-of-initiatives-for-intercultural-care-and-support
We are delighted to share that Bristol Dementia Wellbeing Service won two awards at last week's Positive Practice in Mental Health OPMH & Dementia Awards 2019.
We won for both Carer Support Services, and for Community/Primary Mental Health Services for People with Dementia.
There were so many fantastic teams across the country nominated, so we were very honoured to be in such esteemed company and proud of our service and staff.
Alzheimer's Research UK have produced the following film 'Let's Talk About Dementia' for the South Asian community.
Alive Activities run supported gardening, green craft and socialising sessions at their fully accessible allotment in Brentry, North Bristol, every Monday and Tuesday afternoon from 1.30 – 3.30. The sessions are for people living with dementia, their care-partners and relatives.
Sessions are run by a therapeutic horticulture specialist and are supported by trained volunteers. Activities are tailored to participants’ abilities and preferences.
All tools and materials are provided, and sessions are free.
Charlton Road Allotments, Charlton Road, Brentry. BS10 6 JZ
More info: aliveactivities.org/dementia-friendly-allotment
Bristol Dementia Wellbeing Service received a Highly Commended Award in Specialist Services at last night’s Positive Practice in Mental Health awards that took place at Anfield, Liverpool. This is a fantastic national recognition of all the hard-work and dedication across the service, putting people affected with dementia at the heart of their care.
We are very proud of our service and a small delegation of our staff were on hand to accept this award.
*Trophy is Liverpool FC's Champions League trophy, not our award!
Dementia Friendly Swim Session are available at Henbury Leisure Centre where all staff have been trained by the St. Monica Trust. As we know exercise is extremely important for our general well-being and can be very beneficial for people living with Dementia.
The session is on a Monday (term time only) 10.30-11.15 in the main pool.
Your introductory session is free and then £2.40 thereafter, carers go free, everyone will need to fill out an everyone active card application form and will be issued with their own card to bring along to each session.
At all sessions they have Swimming Instructors on hand if anyone is feeling nervous about getting in the water and they will stay with them and assist them for the duration they are in the pool and help with getting in/out of the water also. They really encourage carers to get in the water with them as a familiar face often helps with their confidence, they have cubicle changing facilities and larger changing rooms plus a disabled one. They have easy access steps into the pool with handrails on both sides and a hoist if required.
You have 45 minutes of pool time but can spend as much or as little time in the water as the person is comfortable with. We have music playing to create a calm and relaxed atmosphere and we finish off with a cup of tea/coffee and a biscuit!
On Wednesday 23 May passengers on the 11.16 train service from Bristol Temple Meads to Severn Beach travelled with musical accompaniment in a special takeover organised to mark Dementia Action Week (21-27 May). Staff and volunteers from Bristol’s Dementia Wellbeing Service helped to organise a special Singing for the Brain session on the Severn Beach Branch line.
The event attracted more than 40 people affected by dementia. Many people hadn’t travelled by train for years and they’d certainly never sung on the train. Songs like Do-Re Mi from the Sound of Music, and Let’s Twist Again by Chubby Checker, could soon be heard ringing through the carriages.
Usually entitled, ‘Singing for the Brain’, this special event was renamed ‘Singing on the Train’. Singing for the Brain, developed by Alzheimer’s Society for people with dementia, promotes communication through singing which can help with articulation, concentration, focus and motivation.
Allison Johnston Dementia Navigator with the Dementia Wellbeing Service said: “In the UK, one person develops dementia every three minutes and almost everyone knows someone whose life has been affected. Yet too many people face the condition alone without adequate support. Activities, like our singing on the train event, illustrated how taking action can help people affected by dementia to feel more included in their community and able to live the life that they want."
“Staff on the train were very welcoming, and understanding, and took time to listen and chat to everybody. There was a lovely atmosphere and there were lots of smiles all round. We’re very grateful to staff from both Great Western Railway and the Severnside Community Rail Partnership who helped make this happen.
“One family in our party commented to me that this was the first time in many years that they had travelled by train together. It goes to show that if we all take small actions, for example to listen and be patient, then we can have a big impact on the lives of people affected by dementia.”.
Two of our Dementia Support Managers, Sally & Agnes visited staff at Nuffield hospital ahead of Dementia action week to discuss dementia and how the Bristol Dementia Wellbeing Service can support the person with dementia and their carer. We were really impressed with the adaptations Nuffield Health are making to the hospital room for a person with dementia when they are an inpatient with them. It’s great that they are working towards making there hospital more dementia friendly. The staff we met were friendly and passionate about supporting a person with dementia so there hospital stay is as comfortable and relaxing as possible. Therese Confait has been busy raising awareness about dementia and doing fundraising events for Dementia Action week by having a pledge tree, cake sale and raffle.
How to get involved in dementia research short film is now available for people with dementia and their carers. For more information about Bristol's Dementia Health Integration Team (HIT), please visit: http://www.bristolhealthpartners.org.uk/health-integration-teams/dementia-hit/research/
Staying Steady is a programme of strength and balance classes to help build strength, walk steadily and lower your risk of falling.
How the classes can help you
A Staying Steady class could help you if you’re feeling unsteady when moving around, are worried about falling or are less mobile than you’d like to be.
The classes can help you:
•stay independent and carry on doing the things you enjoy
•improve your confidence and reduce the fear of falling
•to be mobile and healthy
•keep active and have fun
What the classes involve
Classes are led by instructors who can adapt the exercises to suit you, so you can exercise safely with support from experts.
Each class lasts for an hour where you’ll be taken through exercises that can be done either seated or standing.
During the class you might be using equipment such as bands, balls and hoops, which are provided.
At the end of the class you’ll be given some information about exercises to do at home.
How to join
If you’d like more information or want to join a Staying Steady class near you, contact one of these centres:
The Greenway Centre
Doncaster Road, Southmead, Bristol, BS10 5FY
Phone: 0117 950 3335 (main reception); 0117 909 0027 (fitness office)
Staying Steady classes:
Tuesday 2pm to 3pm
Friday 2pm to 3pm
Monday 2pm to 3pm
To see further details of classes go to the Greenway Centre website and click on the Mead events calendar.
Brunel Fitness Centre
Speedwell Road, Bristol, BS15 1NU
Phone: 0117 377 0098
Staying Steady classes:
Thursday 1.30pm to 2.30pm from April 2018
Easton Leisure Centre
Thrissell Street, Easton, Bristol, BS5 0SW
Phone: 0117 955 8840 or 07825 033 741
Staying Steady classes:
Wednesday 11am to 12noon from April 2018
Hengrove Park Leisure Centre
Hengrove Promenade, Hengrove Park, Bristol, BS14 0DE
Tel: 0117 937 0200
Staying steady classes:
Tuesday 12.30pm to 1.30pm from April 2018
The Park Centre
Daventry Road, Knowle, Bristol, BS4 1DQ
Phone: 0117 903 9770
Staying steady classes:
Monday 3pm to 4pm from April 2018
Cost: £3.50 per session
For further information please visit the Bristol City Council website
In the Bristol Dementia Wellbeing Service we are keen to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to be involved in research.
Research studies can take a number of forms and may investigate different aspects of dementia from clinical trials of new medicines to finding out which care treatments work best. Research can be beneficial in a number of ways, including the potential to improve one's own condition, wellbeing or quality of life, the ability to access treatments which may not be widely available and the possibility of helping other people with dementia in the future.
Examples of being involved in research can include talking to researchers about a particular subject, completing a questionnaire or attending a health centre for tests. Even if you sign-up to be involved in research, you are under no obligation to be part of any specific study, and you are always given full information about how you will be involved and what will happen - you can always change your mind at any time.
The Bristol Dementia Wellbeing Service will have a number of studies which are looking for volunteers. If you would like to find out more about the current opportunities, or to find out more about local research in your area, please get in touch with Shaun Popel, our Assistant Research Practitioner on 0117 904 5150 who will be happy to talk to you.
My Life Films make free life story films for people living with dementia. Celebrating their favourite memories, bringing the focus back to the individual rather than their illness to improve person-centred care, and improving their quality of life. The South West London and St George's NHS Trust recently ran a pilot study to see how the films help people living with dementia in care homes, the following short video explains the positive impacts: https://vimeo.com/203289973
For further information about the charity please visit their website. Their criteria can be viewed here. You can download a flier about their service here.
We have now launched an innovative series of short films in six different languages giving information about dementia and relevant support services in the city. We commissioned the six short films - in Urdu, Punjabi, Cantonese, Somali, Polish and English-language - to address the stigma, misunderstanding and lack of accurate information currently available for the culturally diverse communities across the city.
There are an estimated 25,000 BME people with dementia in the UK. While the number of white, British people with dementia is expected to double by 2051, the numbers of people from BME communities is expected to increase sevenfold within the same timeframe.
Mrs Kwan, who is originally from China, has lived in Bristol with her husband for 45 years and raised their family here. She is now carer to her husband who has dementia. She explains: “Life changes significantly for someone with dementia, and for their carer and family too. It’s really important to get help. In our community, a lot of people don’t know what dementia is, we don’t even have a word for it. This means that lots of people with the disease run the risk of being forgotten.”
Within each of the films, medical experts, people affected by dementia and members of the relevant communities explain what dementia is, outline how people can gain a diagnosis and access the free support available from the Dementia Wellbeing Service.
This issue is echoed across many communities, as well as within white-British communities, and one which the films address head on.
Khadra Abdi, who cares for her mother with dementia and is active in the Somali community in Bristol says: “Many older people within our community have limited English language, and when they don’t understand what dementia is it can be very scary. These films explain about the disease and the help available in a simple, clear way, and most importantly in their native language, making it far easier for them to gain a genuine understanding of dementia, get a diagnosis from their GP and to get support from the Dementia Wellbeing Service”.
You can now view the films from our homepage or via our YouTube channel and hardcopies are available from 0117 904 5151
The Bristol Dementia Wellbeing Service took part as partner organisation in the research project “The Dementia Experiences of people from Caribbean, Chinese and South Asian communities in Bristol” overseen by University of West of England (UWE) which has just been published. UWE spoke to older people and their families from African-Caribbean, Chinese and South Asian communities in Bristol in order to find out about the experiences of people with dementia.
The service is currently considering the report’s recommendations and will continue to work in partnership with community groups across Bristol to ensure the service is responsive to the needs and challenges for people with dementia across different communities.
A copy of the report can be viewed here and the suplimentary information here.
You can also hear about the experiences of dementia of people from BME communities in this film.
Alzheimer's Society have updated their guides for both LGBT people living with dementia and for those supporting LGBT people with dementia.
If you are lesbian, gay, bisexual or trans and have dementia, these guides talk about the things you can do to remain independent, get the emotional and practical support that’s right for you, and plan for your future.
You may feel that lots of the information and advice you are given, or lots of the support available, isn’t right for you. You may have, or feel you have, different circumstances to heterosexual or cisgender people (someone whose gender identity is the same as the sex they were assigned at birth). This could be because of your experiences, your living arrangements, the support you receive and who you have around you.
Dementia is challenging for everyone, and everyone’s situation will affect what living with dementia is like for them. However, being LGBT and having dementia can present extra difficulties. It can also mean that living well with dementia means something different to you – something that you don’t hear talked about as much.
It’s important to know that you aren’t alone. Support and advice is available, there are services and care settings designed to support you, and the law protects your rights to equal treatment and privacy. By knowing your rights, finding the right support, and planning for your future, it is possible to live well with dementia.
Sally Townsend, our Community Development Coordinator for schools has produced the following resource list to raise dementia awareness with children and young people.
Join our online singing group where you can meet new people in a friendly, fun and social environment. Singing can improve your brain activity, wellbeing and mood. You don't need to be a good singer to benefit! Join us for fun vocal warm-ups and sing a wide variety of familiar and new songs.
Contact Sophia Simlat
Tel: 07872 866501
A virtual group is available weekly on a Monday afternoon, 1.15pm-2.15pm.
Due to COVID-19, this group is currently being run on Zoom through Trinity-Henleaze United Reformed Church.
First, Third and Fifth Thursday, monthly 2pm-3.45pm
A virtual group is available weekly on a Wednesday morning, 11.15am-12.15pm.
Anyone with concerns about their memory or that of another can attend. Sessions run weekly and often have a guest speaker.
Contact Claire Muscat
Tel: 07872 866 502
A virtual Memory Café takes place weekly on a Thursday afternoon, 3.30pm-4.30pm
Regular Support groups for close family, friends and carers of people with Dementia led by experienced facilitators. The groups are places to share concerns and experiences
This group is on hold due to COVID-19