Dementia support initiative in Bell Green

Pic: Laurie Martin

Pic: Laurie Martin

Dementia Awareness Week came to Bell Green with a pop-up stall to help people understand and cope with the condition.

The Lewisham MindCare Dementia Information and Support Service is part of the Bromley regional group of  the mental health charity Mind.

MindCare has an extensive operation in Lewisham with careers and volunteers who assist those living with the impairment.

“There are nearly 1,000 people in Lewisham alone currently living with dementia and we would like for them to be accommodated as normally as possible in the daily functions of the community,” said Leila Lawton, an advisor working at MindCare.

With such a large number of people requiring attention, part of MindCare’s mission is to build a stronger network of volunteers and increase their impact in the community.

“We currently assist about 200 trained care givers who work with us and engage with those living with dementia,” said Doreen Taylor, who has been with the organisation as a one-to-one volunteer for four months.

Taylor, having fought cancer and memory impairment herself, says there is a need in society to better understand people living with dementia.

Steve Mucklow, a senior citizen with dementia, says: “Having led an active life previously, it was frustrating for me to be unable to go out by myself at my own leisure at times.”

Mucklow also emphasised: “Interacting with people who understand my needs alleviates this and it is something I would like to teach others in the community living with Dementia.”

Reporting by Nakul Rajkumar and Laurie Martin

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