Survival funding means Dementia Friendly Worthing will stay operational

Survival funding from two separate sources means Dementia Friendly Worthing will stay operational until at least the end of the year.

Worthing Dementia Action Alliance, which runs the project, said without this support, it would have struggled to keep the groups and other resources going.

A grant of £17,586 was awarded from the Government’s new Coronavirus Community Support Fund, distributed by The National Lottery Community Fund, and Sussex Community Foundation approved a further £4,987.50 from the NET Coronavirus Fund.

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Dementia Friendly Worthing co-ordinator Lynsey Tran said the money would pay for new initiatives to support people with dementia and their carers.

Dementia Friendly Worthing co-ordinator Lynsey Tran with Ralph Waters at a memory cafe last year. Picture: Derek Martin DM1953150a

She said: “The last three months have meant that people with dementia and their carers have been extremely isolated in their homes. Carers particularly have been deprived of respite opportunities, as well as being fearful about the safety and the wellbeing of the person with dementia.

“This period has been trying for the brightest and fittest of people but trying to explain to someone with dementia that they can’t go out or what was happening locally, and on the news, has been especially difficult.

“Dementia Friendly Worthing has had to rethink their strategies as people who they seek to reach and support are less accessible than ever.

“This funding has meant we can bring information sessions, falls prevention advice, singing and group therapies online and talk people through the use of Zoom, as well as loan tablets to those unable to afford them.

“We want to encourage this particular group of carers to become part of our Dementia Friendly Worthing online community and support them to try new things.”

Volunteer anticipate getting out in the community in time, with dementia cafés, but in the short term, they will be driving awareness through social media.

They hope those who may find it more awkward might be encouraged by a family member or a neighbour to get in touch on 07903 720208.

In the next month, sessions planned include Dementia Friends, falls prevention and wellbeing, legal and financial matters, singing and Doodling with Dementia therapies.

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