Living well with dementia
Three days a week the Jubilee Community Centre offers a lifeline for older people with mild to moderate dementia through their Kingfisher Club. Activities such as singing, poetry reading, crafts, information sessions, food tasting and quizzes are provided by a professional and caring team. The club also offers much-needed respite for carers.
A grant from Hertfordshire Community Foundation has helped to improve what the club is able to offer and the way they support people living with dementia to make the environment as safe and inviting as possible. The pandemic had a huge impact on many of the people who attend the club with many of them feeling isolated and forgotten.
Jo is 82 and lives alone. During lockdown, she struggled with anxiety and loneliness, to the point where she was referred for inpatient treatment for her mental health.
When the club re-opened after the lockdowns, Jo started attending just one day per week. After a few weeks, staff and family members noticed that her confidence began to improve. She felt less alone, more able to get out and about, and was better able to manage her anxiety. Just a few months on and Jo is now attending the club three days per week, staff say she is always smiling and chatting with her friends and volunteers at the club. Due to her dementia, Jo is not able to read and can find it hard to communicate - but she loves doing chair-based activities to music and enjoys anything creative. Her family say that without the club, she would probably have had to move into a care home.
By offering a range of activities they are able to support people with different abilities and needs so they can all be happy, healthy, and thrive and live well with dementia. Hertfordshire Community Foundation is pleased to have been able to support this organisation.