The first Dementia Conference held by the Bury St Edmunds Dementia Action Alliance (DAA) was held on Wednesday 17th May 2017, to support people living with dementia and their families. The conference was organised by Lorraine Clarke (that’s me) and Maggie Woodhouse from West Suffolk Hospital. Maggie and I worked hard to find the right speakers to come and give their valuable advice and pearls of wisdom to support people living with dementia in the community. We also worked hard to gain funding for the conference and were very pleased to have been supported by Councillor Warby and the Bury town council.
The agenda was jam packed and the conference was opened by Rowan Proctor followed by Sharon Basson reading a poem she had written about a person living with dementia.
Honest and moving talk by Chris Roberts
The key note speakers at the start of the day were was the inspirational Chris Roberts and his wife Jayne Goodrick. They both shared their experience of how since Chris was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia, they have lived their lives. It was truly moving, honest and gave the delegates an insight into their personal journey from diagnosis to the present day. You can see their story here …
The speakers included information from Amanda Bloomfield from Gatehouse,
The Sue Ryder Dementia Together project was explained by Jo Marshall
Moira Clare from Partnerships in Care, Nigel George talking about the Dementia Action Alliance and Maggie talked about the work the hospital are doing to improve the experience of a person with dementia staying in hospital. The memory walk at the hospital looks amazing and is a real talking point for anyone visiting the hospital.
I talked about how home care can enable a person to remain living in their own home and how to access that kind of support. People often call me for advice having been a social worker in the local authority so I’m always happy to help where I can. For more details on community care assessments from the local authority, please click here… For more information on ClarkeCare, call 01284-365247
We had workshops in the afternoon discussing Communication skills which was delivered by Maggie and really got everyone thinking about how they communicate. So important to give a person living with dementia the time to absorb what you’re saying or asking them.
The conference ended by making 11 new Dementia Friends.
It was a really successful day enjoyed bu everyone who attended. We hope to organise another Dementia Conference next year with more amazing guest speakers. BIG THANK YOU to Maggie for helping me to organise it and to Councillor Frank Warby for funding it.
Thanks also go to Rosemary Lawson and her team at Nowton Court Village for all their help on the day.