Tea party gets people talking about dementia during action week

Jonny Hawes from Sue Ryder, carers lead for Waveney Catherine Phillips and Valerie Cadmore from the

Jonny Hawes from Sue Ryder, carers lead for Waveney Catherine Phillips and Valerie Cadmore from the Alzheimer's Society. PHOTO: NSFT - Credit: Archant

A tea party has been held to encourage people to start a conversation about dementia during an action week.

Held in Poppies Cafe at Carlton Court Hospital, Carlton Colville, and attended by around 20 people with dementia or memory loss and carers with links to the Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) ward at the hospital, the event marked Dementia Action Week, which runs until Sunday, May 26.

Catherine Phillips, NSFT's carers lead for Waveney, said: "The Alzheimer's Society is encouraging everyone to take action in Dementia Action Week by starting a conversation and we could think of no better way of doing that than a tea party.

"It was also an opportunity to give carers a break, to get them out of their homes so they could gather together and have some support.

"It was such a positive event and, as well as service users and carers, staff from across every team at Carlton Court took part.

"Staff baked so many cakes that we had enough left over to hold a tea party on the ward at the unit."

Maria Harris, operational manager for older people's services at Carlton Court Hospital, said the tea party showed NSFT's commitment for meaninful engagement with carers and families.

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She said: "The tea party brought all of our teams and interested parties together to share information and to listen to the needs of carers and families to ensure we are meeting their needs.

"We are supporting people in their place of residence, rather than admitting them inappropriately, which can be stressful and disruptive and often not in the individual's best interests."

The event was also attended by Valerie Cadmore, an information worker from the Alzheimer's Society, and Jonny Hawes, a dementia navigator with the charity Sue Ryder.

Mr Hawes said: "The afternoon tea event continues to show the partnership working between Sue Ryder and NSFT when supporting people affected by dementia.

"It enabled people to meet and gain support from others in similar circumstances to themselves, as well as information and support from professionals."

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