One of the unfortunate hallmarks of dementia is loneliness, for both sufferers and their carers. But since the beginning of this month (February 2017) both parties now have access to a new support system thanks to monthly meetings hosted by The Salvation Army at Matley Community Centre.
The support café on Brimbles Way hosts group meetings on the first Wednesday of every month. Meetings run from 10:30am to 12:00pm and include refreshments and fun activities such as crafts, quizzes and games.
Experience leads to action
Lieutenant Angela Wilson, leader of Peterborough Ortons Salvation Army, realised the need for safe and accessible spaces for dementia sufferers and their carers after supporting her mother (a dementia sufferer) and after speaking to other people who also experienced loneliness when coping with dementia. The café now provides opportunities for dementia sufferers and their carers to socialise, enjoy enrichment activities, and get much-needed support.
“This new café is all about journeying together and helping each other live life to the full,” said Lieutenant Angela Wilson.
Lieutenant Angela, who studied dementia support during her training as a Salvation Army minister, said, “People with dementia really benefit from informal atmospheres and interactive activities – the same is true when it comes to church. So in addition to offering tea, coffee, and cake, there will be the chance to sing hymns and listen to a short reflective thought.”
Everyone is welcome
Even though The Salvation Army is a Christian charity, Lieutenant Angela said that everyone is welcome. “We know that many older people have memories of attending Sunday school as children and we hope that hearing familiar words and songs may trigger memories and enable people with dementia to engage with those around them.”
Matley Community Centre has full disabled access and parking on site. For more information, please contact Lieutenant Angela on 01733 230830 or email email@example.com
The Salvation Army, an international church and charity, is one of the UK’s largest providers of social care with registered care homes and services for older people across the country.