Kiama’s Dementia Friendly Project continues to attract international attention. Dementia Alliance International (DAI), the peak organisation globally representing persons with dementia, has invited Kiama Council’s Nick Guggisberg and Dennis Frost, chair of the Dementia
Advisory Group, to present their next global webinar in the series A Meeting of the Minds.
As DAI says in its promotion of the event, “Many people with dementia now see the Kiama DFC Pilot Project as the GOLD STANDARD of any Dementia Friendly Community project or initiative in the world. Please join us to find out why.”
The webinar follows the initiative being awarded a 2016 National Local Government Innovation Award in the Access and Inclusion category, and Dennis travelling to Budapest to share the successes of the Project at the 31st International Conference of Alzheimer’s Disease International.
Just why is Kiama attracting so much attention?
Nick Guggisberg says the important ingredient is the active Dementia Advisory Group, which is made up of people with dementia and their carers/supporters/partners.
“The Group gives invaluable strategic and practical advice,” he says.
“We are constantly being told that internationally this model is being cited as the way to do it.”
Nick stresses that the Project isn’t about service delivery but about community development. “People with dementia who are still connected to the community have a higher quality of life. Real needs can be addressed by having people with dementia at the heart of the project.”
The other special ingredient is the involvement of the University of Wollongong, as its researchers are measuring the effects of the changes that are implemented within our community.
“Our partnership with the University of Wollongong is critical as it is bringing academic rigor to the process.”
Nick and Dennis will be presenting the seminar to an international audience as dawn breaks, so people can tune in live around the world, using conferencing software that will enable interaction.
Details: People wishing to join the webinar should go to eventbrite.com and search under DAI.
Prices range up to $45. There will be other local opportunities to become involved with making Kiama Dementia Friendly, including more training and information sessions.