The first ever alliance dementia conference in Brent will see Community Action on Dementia (CAD) Brent, Brent Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) which is responsible for 370,000 patients registered with GPs in Brent, and Brent Council pledge to make the borough dementia- friendly by 2020.
The ‘Together for a Dementia-Friendly Brent 2020’ conference will take place at the Brent Civic Centre on Thursday 24 May during this Dementia Week. This follows Mayor of London Sadiq Kahn’s promise to make London the first dementia-friendly capital city in the world by 2020.
The Brent initiative by Community Action on Dementia (CAD-Brent), with the support of grassroots community organisations, including Ashford Place Community Centre in Cricklewood, will aim to create greater public understanding of dementia as well as encouraging local authorities (statutory agencies, police, transport) to create more services.
An action plan entitled Brent: Dementia Friendly Borough 2020, launched on 24 May 2018 at Brent Civic Centre in Wembley, will set out what steps need to be taken as a community to achieve this 2020 vision. One goal is to have 20 dementia friendly pop-up cafes across the borough which will be run, in partnership with people living with dementia, by local communities, charities and businesses, currently there are eight.
Dementia affects over 850,000 people in the UK – set to rise to over a million by 2021 – and is the leading cause of death in England and Wales, costing the UK £26 billion a year. In Brent alone, there are nearly 2,000 people living with Dementia and over £10 million was spent on nursing homes and residential care homes specialising in dementia in 2014.
The following year, £270,407 was spent on extra care (supported living) housing specialising in dementia. Key partners, businesses, statutory agencies and volunteer organisations across Brent, as well as people living with dementia and their carers, have been invited to Thursday’s event at the Civic Centre.
There will be sessions on living with dementia and caring for someone with dementia and Dementia Friends. As well as roundtable discussions on what Brent needs to do to be dementia-friendly. The purpose of the conference is to agree how the borough – with the highest population of elderly Irish in the country – can meet the seven criteria set out by the Alzheimer’s Society.
Councillor Harbi Farah, Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: “The Mayor of London has made a commitment to making London the world’s first dementia-friendly capital; we are taking this further by making Brent a dementia-friendly borough.
“Brent will be a place where every person living with dementia – no matter who they are or where they live – are understood, respected and supported so that they can continue to live in the way they want to and in the community they choose.”
Danny Maher, Chair of CAD Brent and Ashford Place, said: “CAD-Brent has been developing a dementia-friendly borough in Brent since 2014. We are proud of the work we have already done but there is so much more we can achieve together to build on this momentum, harness the local community, and accelerate progress to our shared goal.”
Dr Ethie Kong, Chair of NHS Brent Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “As many as 3000 people live with dementia in Brent. Although help from health and care services is important, for people affected by dementia to live well requires help and understanding from their local community. This event is a crucial start to bringing everyone in Brent – from local health and care services, the voluntary sector and local shops, to book clubs and faith communities – help to create a community where people living with dementia feel active, engaged and valued.”
There will be a market place area with information and advice stalls on a variety of topics including dementia-related legal and financial issues, healthy lifestyle and eating habits.
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