Thetford & District Dementia Support Group celebrates third anniversary

Thetford & District Dementia Support Group has celebrated it's third anniversary. Picture from left

Thetford & District Dementia Support Group has celebrated it's third anniversary. Picture from left to right: group trustee Yvonne Warren, group founder Jo Mountjoy-Dixon, trustee Jo Lylie Cooper and Tesco community champion Sarah Douthwaite. Picture: Rebecca Murphy - Credit: Archant

It is a vital service which provides help and support for people living with dementia and their carers.

Thetford & District Dementia Support Group has celebrated its third anniversary. Picture: Rebecca Mu

Thetford & District Dementia Support Group has celebrated its third anniversary. Picture: Rebecca Murphy - Credit: Archant

And the Thetford & District Dementia Support Group has celebrated its third anniversary.

When the group was founded by Jo Mountjoy-Dixon in 2014 there were six people who attended.

Now 40 people regularly use the service, which is held every Friday at Cloverfields Community Church, Thetford, and there are 10 volunteers.

Mrs Mountjoy-Dixon said: 'It is amazing, and I think it shows there is a real need in the town for people to have somewhere to go where they can just feel accepted and form friendships and bonds.'

At the group careers are able to swap knowledge, information is provided and training and workshops are offered.

A two-course meal is cooked on-site by trustee Jo Lylie Cooper with food supplied by the town's Tesco through the FareShare scheme and their community champion Sarah Douthwaite.

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There are trips out - this year's visit was to Wells-next-the-Sea - and activities including music and reminiscing talks.

Yvonne Warren was a carer for her husband for seven years before he died. She is now a trustee.

'You can help everybody in the group because you have been through it,' she said. 'It is such a sad disease.'

A celebration took place at the group to celebrate the anniversary, with cake, and music from the town's U3A band.

The charity is now working towards making the town dementia friendly and will be holding a meeting in September for businesses to sign up for training and workshops.

Mrs Mountjoy-Dixon said: 'It is mega important because if a town is dementia friendly it is friendly for everybody. They know how to work with anybody.

'I think it is just really important and it makes a town a community. We have got loads of support from the local community.'

Ms Lylie Cooper is also looking into setting up a befriending service which would enable volunteers to go to people's houses to give respite for careers.

She added: 'This is just a lovely group, they are wonderful.

' For many it is a lifeline.'

To more information about the group click here or call 07542866519.

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