The Harpenden Town Council Mission Statement - To promote the area as a place to live, a place to work, a place to invest and a place to visit
A- A A+

Dementia Friendly Town

Harpenden Dementia Friendly Logo

Alzheimer’s Society local services update

Coronavirus Update

During the coronavirus pandemic, The Alzheimer's Society has advice and practical tips for people living with dementia and those supporting them. For more information, visit their website:

alzheimers.org.uk/coronavirus-covid-19.

Local Alzheimer’s Society teams continue to provide information, support and guidance to those who need it. To ensure the wellbeing of our service users, volunteers and staff, we have made some changes to how this support is provided. This may change depending on future government guidance, but at present the following is in place in your area:

Direct support for people affected by dementia:


• All face-to-face and home visits have currently been suspended.
• We will increase the number of keeping in touch telephone calls with service users to help support their wellbeing and guard against isolation.
• We will be extending the operating hours of our national Dementia Connect Support Line. Trained advisors can be contacted via 0333 150 3456 for advice and guidance.

Group support:
• All local group sessions have been suspended.
• We are working with our volunteers to develop ways to continue to support group members via other methods.

Online support:
• Advice and guidance on a range of issues is available on our website.
• We would encourage people to join Dementia Talking Point. This is our online community where people affected by dementia can receive valuable support from people in similar situations.

Further support:
• People with questions about what they should be doing and how they should be interacting with people living with dementia at this time can access this guidance.
• Any community groups or individuals that wish to support vulnerable adults during this time can contact Alzheimer’s Society for information and guidance. This includes how to access our online Dementia Friends awareness sessions.

Alzheimer’s Society contact details:
Website: www.alzheimers.org.uk
Telephone: 0333 150 3456

Update from Dementia Carers Count

Dementia Carers Count have set up a Virtual Carers Centre with information about the online resources and digital services that they offer: https://dementiacarers.org.uk/virtual-carers-centre/

Help us to make Harpenden a Dementia Friendly Town!

Harpenden Town Council has committed to making Harpenden a Dementia Friendly Town, a place where those living with dementia are understood, respected and included. 

Dementia is a set of symptoms that may include memory loss and difficulties with thinking, problem-solving or language that affects daily life. Dementia is challenging for both people with the condition and those that care for them, but it is possible to live well with Dementia.

What would you do if somebody approached you and indicated they were lost or confused?

Please take a look at from this article from the Alzheimer’s Society which provides information and suggestions for approaching and helping somebody who may be living with dementia: https://bit.ly/2m6LNqi 

Harpenden Memory Lane Café

Postponed – Harpenden Memory Lane Café

The Town Council has been closely following the development of the Coronavirus and considering what action it needs to take to mitigate any risks to its Employees, Councillors and members of the public.

As a result of this we have taken the decision to cancel non-essential Council meetings and initiatives between now and the end of April. These are meetings/initiatives that were due to take place indoors involving Councillors, Employees and members of the public.

This decision includes the cancellation of the Dementia Café which the Town Council was due to deliver on 24 March, 14 April & 28 April.

Given the concerns that the virus will continue to worsen we are advising that the Café is postponed until further notice. 

Take our Survey 

We are now investigating the specific requirements of the Harpenden Community and are keen to hear from those living with Dementia in their lives, about the following;

  • What facilities that are currently in place within the Town are useful? This could be specific calm spaces, cafes, churches etc.
  • What could be improved within Harpenden to make a visit to the Town easier or more comfortable?
  • Are there any specific retailers/businesses that provide a particularly positive experience?
  • Do you feel that there is a requirement for a Dementia Café within the Town to provide information and a place for relatives to also speak to each other?
  • Are you part of an existing group/Organisation that would be willing to participate?

Please take our survey at: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/HarpendenDementiaSurvey.

This survey template was developed in alignment with the Alzheimer's Society parameters and guidance. 

Become a Dementia Friend

Update

The Town Council has been closely following the development of the Coronavirus and considering what action it needs to take to mitigate any risks to its Employees, Councillors and members of the public.

As a result of this we have taken the decision to cancel non-essential Council meetings and initiatives between now and the end of April. These are meetings/initiatives that were due to take place indoors involving Councillors, Employees and members of the public.

This includes the Dementia Awareness Talk previously scheduled for 18th March. We do not have any further talks planned but if you would like to hear more about our plans for a Dementia Friendly Harpenden please contact myself on this email address (sarah.brimley@harpenden.gov.uk)

*********

To promote awareness, we will also be running several ‘Dementia Friends’ Talks, hosted by our local Alzheimer’s Society Dementia Champion. These free information sessions give participants the opportunity to find out more about;

  • Dementia and how it affects a person
  • Our plans to establish Harpenden as a Dementia Friendly Town
  • What you can do to make a difference locally

At the end of the session, you will become a Dementia Friend, joining more than 2.5 million people of all ages across the UK.

Should you be part of a larger community group or business, specific talks can also be arranged.

Are you already a Dementia Friend/Champion living in Harpenden? If so, please do get in touch.

For more information on the Making Harpenden Dementia Friendly Initiative or to book a place on the next Dementia Friends Talk,  please contact our Projects Officer, Sarah Brimley by emailing sarah.brimley@harpenden.gov.uk or calling 01582 768 278.

Resources

Citizens Advice St Albans District Carers Support 

Citizens Advice St Albans provides one-to-one advice appointments for carers. Their qualified advisers can help with a range of matters, including: 

  • Applying for benefits such as attendance allowance, personal independence payment and carer's allowance 
  • Blue badges and bus passes
  • Powers of attorney
  • Care home fees
  • Equipment and home care 
  • Household bills and maximising income 

To find out more, call Citizens Advice St Albans on 01727 811118 or email carers@castad.org.uk and leave your contact details. 

Dementia Carers Count

Dementia Carers Count offer FREE support courses for family and friends caring for a person living with dementia. Courses range from 1 to 3 days and cover the different types of dementia, including a specific Young Onset (for those diagnosed with dementia under the age of 65). Strong focus is given to how you can build on and develop your own resilience, in order to help increase your well-being, confidence in your caring role and to explore different ways of responding to challenges.

Please see the website for further details: www.dementiacarers.org.uk

Dementia Connect

Dementia Connect, from Alzheimer’s Society, is a new personalised service that connects anyone affected by dementia to the support they need, when they need it. It offers people with dementia, and their carers, family and friends, free and easy access to the support they need. From practical advice on legal documents, to someone to talk to when things get tough. And they can access support by phone, online and face to face. https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/refer

Dementia UK Helpline 

Call the Dementia UK Helpline for free on 0800 888 6678. "From looking out for the first symptoms of Alzheimer’s, to understanding the challenges of living with someone with vascular dementia, our specialist Admiral Nurses have the knowledge and experience to understand the situation and suggest answers that might be hard to find elsewhere." For full details, visit:

https://www.dementiauk.org/get-support/dementia-helpline-alzheimers-helpline/

M4D Radio: https://m4dradio.com/

M4D radio, https://m4dradio.com/, is part of the Music for Dementia campaign to make music available to everyone living with dementia. Our ambition is to make music freely available and a part of everyone’s care plan.

About music and dementia

Music is a wonderful connector and has the ability to bring people together in the here and now. It can enliven, stimulate and enable people living with dementia to express themselves creatively through musical engagement.

Research shows – and lived experiences demonstrate – that music can help reduce the often distressing symptoms of dementia, such as agitation, apathy and anxiety.

Poignantly, music supports people living with dementia to communicate beyond words. It also supports emotional health and wellbeing, particularly at a time when emotions can be overwhelming or difficult to process or manage. 

So, not only does music have a valuable role to play in enhancing quality of life, it helps carers in their vital roles

Local Dementia Groups

Herts Musical Memories

Herts Musical Memories delivers vibrant music sessions that are both fun & therapeutic for people with memory problems, people living with dementia and their carers. Herts Musical Memories help people connect to their memories through singing - the sessions are specially designed, using musical therapy techniques to be of benefit to those living with Alzheimer’s Disease, other forms of dementia, and memory problems.

The sessions last 90 minutes and include a relaxed welcome with refreshments on
arrival. We sing an eclectic mix of songs both old and new – and we laugh a lot! Don't
worry about being good singers - most people tell us they can't sing but after their first
visit they nearly always come back for more.

Location: There are several Herts Musical Memories sessions to choose from, including groups in St Albans and Wheathampstead

When: Times, dates and locations vary depending on which location you would like to attend. Please visit http://hertsmusicalmemories.org.uk/ for details. 

Cost: We offer a free trial session and thereafter the sessions are £2.50 per person.

Contact: 

020 8950 5757  admin@hertsmusicalmemories.org.uk; http://hertsmusicalmemories.org.uk/ 

Hertswise: Dementia Support in Herts

Join Hertswise at the Harpenden Community Hub for refreshments, fun activities, games, exercises, and support. Refreshments provided. 

Location: Lea Springs, Lower Luton Road, Harpenden, AL5 5FA

When: Every Tuesday, 2pm-4pm

Cost: We ask for a £5 contribution per session, but there is no need to book your place. Carers and family members may attend these sessions at no charge.

Contact: 0300 123 4044     Monday – Friday, 8am-6pm (Calls charged at a local rate)

https://hertswise.org.uk

Wheathampstead Dementia Wellbeing Group: Dementia Cafe

PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS GROUP IS TEMPORARILY SUSPENDED DUE TO THE CONCERNS OVER THE CORONA VIRUS OUTBREAK WITHIN THE UK.

THIS ENTRY WILL BE UPDATED ONCE THE GROUP HAS RE-OPENED.

No need to book for this free sociable get-together for people with dementia and their carers. Come along and join us for refreshments and to meet new people. 

Location: Mead Hill, East Lane, Wheathampstead AL48BP (Behind the Bull Public House Car Park)

Cost: Free

Contact: Isobel Poole, Tel: 07949 630 228

Last updated about 2 months ago