Dementia Friendly Project

Proposal – Can we change the way you think, talk and act about dementia?

What is the Maidstone Dementia Friendly Community?

This organisation is a group of like minded individuals, businesses, charities and community groups who want to improve the lives of individuals and their families living in Maidstone with dementia.

The exact number of people living in Maidstone with dementia is unknown.  Some live for the remainder of their lives never being diagnosed with dementia and some live with a diagnosis and receive support and assistance from the local community.  The Maidstone Dementia Friendly Community wants to ensure that everyone living with dementia, whether diagnosed or not, feels able to seek help and support and is able to continue to live a fulfilled life.

The Maidstone Dementia Friendly team want to help Maidstone become a town which can shout about working towards becoming dementia friendly.  We want to welcome everyone to our town by making it not just a dementia friendly environment but a people friendly environment; a space where people can feel safe and a place where they are truly welcomed.

What is dementia friends?

Dementia Friends is a social action movement run by the Alzheimer’s Society.  It aims to give people and businesses an understanding of dementia and the small things that can be done to make a difference to families living with dementia in our communities.

In Maidstone town centre there are many businesses providing a service to individuals living with dementia.  Your customers will be people living with dementia and your staff or their families may go on to develop dementia.

Having a basic understanding of what dementia is and how you can make small changes can make a huge difference to a customer’s experience.

Why is it important for businesses to engage?

Dementia costs UK businesses £1.6billion per year.  Approximately 89% of employers believe that dementia will become a bigger issue in the future for their staff and the organisation itself.

Lack of confidence is one of the main reasons that individuals living with dementia stop going out.  Imagine if a visit to your organisation could restore that confidence.  Doing your own shopping, buying your own clothes, doing your own banking becomes very important to an individual who is gradually becoming more reliant upon others for assistance.  What a difference you would make to their day if the small amount of help you give made all the difference.

Let us help you provide a higher level of care to your customers and help you to go that extra mile.  We can help to raise your profile within the local community by highlighting the good things your business does.  There is nothing better than a great recommendation for customer service!

What can you do to make a difference?

We have many ideas on what we would like to do in Maidstone but want and need your help to achieve this.  We can provide dementia friends sessions to local businesses.  We can make safe zones in shops to provide a safe haven.  We can provide a helpline facility to help with any questions you may have.  We can work together to build a network of dementia friendly business.

The Maidstone Dementia Friendly team want to hold a “Maidstone – the Big Ask” question and answer session in the town centre.  We will provide a panel of experts who can explain why being dementia, and people, friendly can improve your business.  We will also highlight the risks to your business of not being dementia or people friendly!

If this is something you would like to be involved with please let Ilsa Butler know so that we can arrange a Maidstone’s Big Ask about dementia and work together to make a difference to Maidstone!

If you are unable to be involved in Maidstone – the Big Ask then we would love to come into your business and conduct some bespoke dementia friendly sessions to help you on the way.

You may enjoy it so much you want to join the Maidstone Dementia Friendly Community!

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