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What's Happening
Thrive
Dear God...
“Hardly anyone can ever find God because God is right at the end of your mind after all the background thoughts are gone.”
Maisie Satchwell-Hust

Prama Life
Dementia Friendly Churches

By increasing peoples understanding of dementia, making some small changes to the way we do and say things, and changes to the physical environment, we can make a real difference for those people with dementia and their carers. If we are to love and support someone with dementia, a little bit of understanding and some tools can make a huge difference to their life.
 
Our project has been developed as part of a strategic approach to support Dementia Friendly Churches across the UK by the PramaFoundation.

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The PramaFoundation is a leading Christian Charity, working with older people and those with dementia to - tackle loneliness and isolation. We have developed a resource, by researching existing tools in use across churches, to support people with dementia. We have participated in a research project with Bournemouth University, looking at environmental influences on people with dementia.

We have also continued developing, with permission, some leading work carried out for Alzheimer’s Australia by a team led by Professor Richard Fleming and Kirsty A. Bennett and a team of people from the University of Wollongong, including people with dementia, their carers, town planners, architects, graphics designers, psychologist, occupational therapists, physiotherapists and community development officers.

We have also worked with people in Dorset with dementia and their carers. We have had input from the leaders of the memory lane groups that we run.

 
 
 

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As our practice developed, we began a pilot within local churches across Dorset to refine and develop the tools, to ensure that they are deliverable in every church.
 
Thanks to the funding from Westhill, we are now able to help churches across Dorset to become Dementia Friendly. We shall be helping church leaders understand dementia, what a dementia friendly church looks and feels like, and provide the tools and resources needed in order to support this transformation.
 
We will also audit the buildings to ensure that they are dementia friendly and make recommendations in order to make them friendlier to those with people dementia and their carers.
 
We will deliver Dementia Friends awareness sessions to church leaders and group/ ministry teams.
 
Our project and resources have been endorsed by the Bishop of Sherborne.
 
Two of our recent achievements include:

- A network of churches in Wimborne are working together to take turns in running services specifically for those with dementia and memory loss.  The services are multi-sensory and tactile and have a real impact on those attending.

- Churches are beginning to meet together and plan services across Wimborne to ensure that there is a consistent approach taken, regular dementia friendly services and organised ministries going into local care homes 
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