A pioneering project to help people with dementia and their families enjoy films, theatre and the arts in Lancaster has received a funding boost.
Journeying Together is a unique collaboration between Age UK Lancashire and The Dukes which was launched last year.
The pilot programme proved such a success that it will continue thanks to a grant of almost £16,500 from the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation - funding that will support more films, theatre events and arts activities at The Dukes.
These events are specifically adapted for older people with dementia and their families but are also open to the general public. Age UK Lancashire know of no similar programme elsewhere.
“We aim to generate wide public interest, and work with leisure, public and private organisations to change perceptions of dementia,” explained Age UK Lancashire’s Divisional Manager, Carol Taylor.
Journey Cafes are also part of the initiative, offering advice in the social setting of The Dukes Café Bar.
Pilot events at The Dukes so far have been warmly welcomed with one visitor commenting: “It was lovely meeting people who are not afraid to talk to us. It stops us being isolated at home.”
The forthcoming series of activities will be co-ordinated by new project officer, Angela Norris who has worked in Lancaster for many years as a health promotion specialist and a community engagement officer.
The aim of Journeying Together is to reduce the loneliness and social isolation which people with dementia and their relatives can suffer but the project also plans to create innovative ways of overcoming some of the obstacles to going out by looking at access to transport and having ‘volunteer buddies.’
• If you are interested in finding out more about the project or in volunteering, please contact Age UK Lancashire on 0300 303 1234