September marks World Alzheimer’s Month, an international campaign to raise awareness and challenge the stigma that surrounds dementia.
Worthing-based charity Guild Care recognises that as dementia progresses, it is important for people to carry on with their interests and for carers to have time to themselves even if it is only for a few hours.
That is why it runs a range of services from home care to day respite services, as well as dedicated care homes, helping families by offering a range of support and information as part of your dementia journey.
Guild Care has developed a range of innovative dementia services that emotionally connect people living with dementia. These services recognise the importance of providing specialist care as well as giving carers much-needed time to recharge their batteries, which is why dementia services are one of the organisation’s core focuses.
The services give carers a break in the knowledge that their loved one is being looked after in a safe, stimulating and secure environment by passionate and trained staff.
Being a family carer can be both physically draining and emotionally stressful, with many carers putting their lives on hold to provide care for a relative.
Nicki Freeman, head of older people’s services, said: “A scheduled respite place for their loved one, in our informal and friendly club surroundings, with like-minded people and friendly faces, helps a carer to be able to relax and to simply begin to be themselves again for a few hours, to meet friends, run errands, pursue hobbies or simply to switch off and recharge.
“Our services are a welcoming place, a change of scenery, where people know who you are by name, what you like and don’t like, where laughter and an individual’s feelings are at the heart of our culture.”
New service Time Out in Worthing provides a range of group outings and community trips for people living with dementia, such as visits to local attractions, strolls along the seafront, pub lunches and cream teas.
This service usually visits somewhere different each week with a door-to-door service, picking people up from their homes in a Guild Care minibus, before being returned home at the end of the day. This service runs on both Monday and Wednesday and is supported by a driver, support workers and volunteers.
Time Out For Carers runs from the Bradbury Wellbeing Centre, a purpose-built dementia facility, providing a wide range of small group activities, such as music, art, exercise, reminiscence, quizzes, hair and beauty, that are tailored to meet the needs and wishes of each individual.
Jacqui Wilkinson, 73, and her husband Ian, 76, have been accessing a wide range of Guild Care’s dementia services for the last three years.
Jacqui said: “Since we got Ian’s diagnosis for the first five years we just ticked along without any support, it was then through word of mouth and carers support that we were recommended to Guild Care.
“I really can’t praise the staff enough. They are all fantastic and go over and above for us all. And actually we do become a family with staff and other people who access the services. We are all in this together. Everyone is very supportive as they truly understand what we are going through.”
For more information on Guild Care’s dementia services, visit www.guildcare.org, call 01903 327327 or email firstname.lastname@example.org