The Mayor of Croydon was presented with a special recognition award from Alzheimer’s Society, the UK’s leading dementia charity, for the borough’s efforts to support people living with dementia.
The awards ceremony on Tuesday (22 January) follows the announcement in the autumn that the charity granted Croydon its highest accolade – Working towards dementia-friendly status.
Thousands of people have attended Dementia Friends Information Sessions organised by the Croydon Dementia Action Alliance (CDAA). At each session, people learn more about dementia and the small ways they can help someone living with the condition.
Local police and fire officers, nurses and staff at Croydon University Hospital, care home staff, secondary school pupils and relatives of people living with dementia are among those who have already attended the sessions.
Croydon Council has also introduced a mandatory policy for all staff to attend a Dementia Friends Information Session.
The CDAA’s work has significantly contributed to Alzheimer’s Society’s reaching 2.5 million Dementia Friends in the UK, with 150,000 in London. A dementia-friendly community is a city, town or village where people with dementia are understood, respected, supported and confident they can contribute to community life.
All CDAA organisations were presented with a certificate at the ceremony for their efforts.
There are more than 3,600 people living with dementia in Croydon. It is a progressive condition that can lead to memory loss and difficulties with thinking, problem-solving or communication. It is estimated that one person develops dementia every three minutes.
“I am really proud of the work in Croydon to raise awareness about dementia. The Dementia Friends Information Sessions are inspiring and really helping families to better understand the changes that are taking place with a relative living with dementia. A number of community groups and businesses have also told us that they are now in a better position to consider what appropriate actions they can take to support people with dementia.”
Councillor Jane Avis, cabinet member for families, health and social care
Linda O’Sullivan, Head of Region, London and South East at the Alzheimer’s Society: “It is great to hear of the positive work happening in Croydon. They are leading the way with the phenomenal work they are doing with residents, health professionals and the emergency services to break down the stigma, loneliness and isolation often associated with dementia.
“People can continue to live well with the condition and it is really important for everyone to understand the needs of those with dementia, so that they are better able to support them in the community. Alzheimer’s Society is looking forward to continuing to work with the CDAA and others to help build a dementia friendly London.”
Councillor Bernadette Khan, the Mayor of Croydon: “I am truly humbled and proud of the contributions in Croydon to support people who live with dementia and their carers. Any one of us can be affected by this condition. The CDAA is changing lives through their Dementia Friends Information Sessions.”
Eligible residents aged between 40 and 74 are entitled to a Free NHS Health Check, which can detect the early signs of a range of problems, such as heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and dementia www.croydon.gov.uk/healthsocial/phealth/healthchecks
Visit Croydon’s health website for tips and advice on what you can do to look after your mental health and wellbeing www.justbecroydon.org/be-happy
For further information on local services and support from Alzheimer’s Society, contact firstname.lastname@example.org