Media Release: Community café hosts dementia support

26 MAR Jeni Sinclair cropped

AN afternoon service designed to support individuals with dementia in Dundee has launched, thanks to a much-needed donation from a Scottish charity.

Bield’s Bonnethill Gardens very sheltered housing development received the £1,960 figure donation from the Lintel Trust after it applied for the funding to set up a life stories project at the Clachan, the service’s community space.

The ‘Life Stories and Reminisce Project’ at the cafe provides a welcoming space for individuals with dementia to share life experiences with other residents, family and carers in the hope that it will improve their mental health through increased social interaction.

A new topic is explored each week with tenants being encouraged to bring artefacts, clippings, books or any other materials which will for them enhance their enjoyment of the sessions.

Notes are taken at each session with the intention of them creating a folder at the end of the project to highlight all the various topics and discussions over the duration of the project.

Jeni Sinclair, volunteer development worker at Bonnethill Gardens, said: “We are extremely thankful to the Lintel Trust for its most generous donation towards our Life stories project at the Clachan.

“Giving our tenants and visitors that come along a space and time in which they can share their experiences and stories with each other is invaluable and something which all of them fully appreciate.

“Bield’s philosophy is to focus on the individual and their abilities which is why we think the Life Stories and Reminisce project will be a big success with staff and residents.”

Lintel Trust is an unendowed charitable trust that works with voluntary organisations and local communities throughout Scotland to encourage and enable individuals to live as independent a life as possible in their homes and to play an active part in their communities.

Bield is currently in the process of applying for additional funding in order to sustain and develop the supportive project.

Chief executive, Brian Logan, said the project at Bonnethill Gardens typifies the approach Bield has made to improve the lives of people who use its services under its new inspirational statement: Free to Be.

He added: “Dementia can cause loneliness and confusion so a project like the ‘Life Stories and Reminisce Project’ can help reduce social isolation whilst embodying Bield’s wider ‘Free to Be’ philosophy, which enables people to make their own choices about how they live their lives while being there to support them when they need it.

“Our volunteer network is stronger than ever and is really helping to make an impact to enrich and enhance the lives of those using our services.”

Life Stories and Reminisce meetings take place on Thursdays afternoons at The Clachan, Bonnethill Gardens, Caldrum Terrace in Dundee between 2pm -4pm.

Bield – a registered charity – has grown from humble beginnings, starting out with one housing development in Bo’ness to become a major provider of a wide range of housing and services for around 20,000 older people across 22 local authority areas.

The Lintel Trust is an unendowed charitable Trust (Scottish charity number SC006002).

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Contact: Aimee Lawrence
Phone: 0131 561 2247