FSCT (Frieda Scott Charitable Trust) Funded Dementia Carer Service Co-ordinator
I have been working in the field of dementia for over 17 years and I have an Honours Degree in Health and Sociology and a Post Graduate Certificate in Dementia Studies. Previously I have worked with the Alzheimer’s Society as a Family Support Co-ordinator and then I had my own company Therapeutic Dementia Support Services for 7 years when I worked on a one-to-one basis with people with dementia and their Carers.
The National Dementia Strategy says “Family Carers are the most important resource available for people with dementia.” Our specialist Dementia Support Service Co-ordinator along with the Adult Carer Support Workers will empower Carers of people with dementia (PWD) in South Lakeland to improve their wellbeing and continue in their caring role.
We will provide practical advice and emotional support, both on a one to one basis through our Support Worker and through peer support groups. We will deliver training to improve Carers’ understanding of dementia and help build their confidence in caring. Carers will also benefit from our other services, including relaxation therapies, counselling and sitting service. Our work will enable Carers to improve their health and feel more in control of their daily lives. They will feel less isolated, have a greater understanding of dementia and will have developed strategies to manage their own wellbeing.
South Lakes Dementia Hub Facebook
South Lakeland Carers dementia services
Research gathered form A Road Less Rocky – Supporting Carers of People with Dementia published by the Carers Trust.
Carers support groups were found to be of value to carers of people with dementia according to several studies. In their systematic review of information and support interventions for carers of people with dementia, Thompson and colleagues (2007) found statistically significant evidence that group-based supportive interventions impacted positively on the psychological morbidity of carers of people with dementia (but they did not find any evidence for positive impact of any other form of intervention) (Thompson et al, 2007). A facilitated focus group provided for carers of people with dementia in Callaby and colleagues’ (2012) research was considered successful by carers because it involved social contact with others in the same situation and also provided physical activity. Members of therapeutic support groups in Manslow and Vandenberghe’s (2010) study valued these groups because they enabled them to acknowledge their feelings and experiences.
Carers also received support and validation from other members of the group. Specialist groups for black, Asian and minority ethnic carers of people with dementia gave members the opportunity to socialise without the stigma of dementia putting constraints on their enjoyment (Mackenzie, 2006). The groups also gave carers the opportunity to share their thoughts and feelings and enabled them to realise that they were not alone. Spouse carers in O’Shaughnessy and colleagues’ (2010) research also benefited from being with other carers of people with dementia; they gained a sense of belonging and emotional validation from attending carers support groups. Support groups were also seen as being useful for getting information/advice and for providing learning opportunities (O’Shaughnessy et al, 2010; Quinn et al, 2008). Carers in Chaudhry’s (2008) study found the groups useful as a place to learn about dementia and local services, and they had reduced levels of stress following the programme of seven weekly groups than they had had prior to the groups starting.
Dementia Carer Support Group meets every third Wednesday in the month at our offices and Shap Road, from 10.30am-12.30pm for peer suppor, advice and information.