Yesterday I had the chance to meet with a group of people who have all been diagnosed with dementia, and meet together regularly to share experiences, support each other and educate others. Educate in Stockport was set up in 2009, as part of the Dementia Engagement and Empowerment Project (DEEP) DEEP
The project is funded and supported by Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust and Stockport Council, and is a collaboration between people with dementia, supporters or buddies, and professional staff. Since the group got going, members have trained hundreds of people who have recently been diagnosed, their family members, and health and care professionals.
In addition, members have supported and ,in some cases, led the development of a network of drop ins across Stockport for people living with dementia, and now over 100 people a week are meeting in peer groups.
Volunteers for the project are recruited and supported through Age UK, and the current volunteer group includes a significant number of retired health and care staff who bring a wealth of knowledge and skill to the role.
This fantastic example of social movement is providing a new way of building on the skills and experiences of the group members, and gives back through its education and peer support.
In telling me about what Educate means to them, members said:
“I enjoy every minute of it” “they call me Mr Dementia in Marple!”, “I wasn’t going out before I joined Educate….now I am out every day doing things – I have even just got a job in a cafe every Tuesday afternoon!”
You can find out more about Educate here:Educate
For more information on Living Well with Dementia Information Sessions in Stockport, contact Mark Perry or Jean Sharpe on 0161 716 4531, or firstname.lastname@example.org