Dementia is a key area of interest for HMT & St Hugh’s nationally as well as locally, which makes Friendship at Home an ideal partner for us to support.
Friendship at Home befriends & supports older people, the Organisations mission is to help is to help combat isolation and loneliness across North East Lincolnshire to improve older people’s quality of life. This is done through befriending in their homes, social activities, advice, information, support and physical activities.
Friendship at Home is a Registered Charity (No,1160062) based in the Cleethorpes & Grimsby area (www.friendshipathome.org.uk)
HMT St Hugh’s – Friendship at Home
HMT-St Hugh’s primary focus & support is around Dementia and F@H provision of practical and emotional support to people who are experiencing Dementia and the family/carers makes them an ideal community partner.
HMT-St Hugh’s has a close working relationship with Friendship at Home and supports it in a number of its initiatives to support older people.
The range of social groups and activities offered, aim to combat isolation, depression and loneliness. Physical activities are offered with a social connection via tai chi, chair based exercise and curling.
A large part of F@H’s work is offering one-to-one befriending in the members home, residential befriending & an independent living service delivered by F@H volunteer workers.
SHH are currently encouraging & supporting the formation of a Memory Lane Choir to mirror the work supported by Sancta-Maria with the Musical Memories Choir. This initiative is just coming to the end of its pilot period and has now moved to a new venue with a view to making it a permanent activity session for F@H.
SHH recently facilitated a community forum for local charities & volunteer groups which has initiated a group, led by F@H, to secure a retail unit in Grimsby town centre shopping complex; Freshney Place. This unit will be a multi-agency info, advice & drop in centre to increase public awareness of groups in and around Grimsby. SHH is supporting this initiative where ever possible including financially in regards to covering utility costs for the initial pilot period which opened its doors week commencing: Monday 4th December 2017.
SHH are currently involved in supporting a new initiative in partnership with F@H and Grimsby Town Football Club as part of the Sporting Memories initiative. This is scheduled to commence on the 16th January 2017.
HMT have also funded The F@H’s St Hugh’s Project which is specifically aimed at working to alleviate problems created by Dementia. This three year project includes two part-time appointments of a Dementia Support Worker & a Dementia Aware Worker.
Lyse Stephenson (F@H Operations Manager) said of the HMT St Hugh’s project; The project supports older people and their families that are experiencing Dementia throughout the whole Dementia journey. The project seeks to create an understanding of their condition and look at positive ways it can be managed to ensure the person is able to live independently for as long as possible. This may be in the form of advice, practical help with personal activities or just a listening ear.
Since the project started in mid-April 2016 it has had an overwhelming response from both potential members and the public. To date 46 members have been assessed and consequently supported with 16 of these members having received a weekly monitoring/activity visit. Effective relationships with organisations such as Navigo, Care Plus Group, Focus, Housing agencies and many voluntary sector organisations have proved invaluable when establishing a co-ordinated and individualised plan of support for the person.
We have attended several public awareness events to promote the new project such as Dementia Awareness week, Carers week and have held numerous information stands in supermarkets, sheltered accommodation and GP practices. The project has supported the staff and Volunteers in undertaking and promoting Dementia Awareness training on both a basic and specialised level to families, businesses and schools for example all in the quest to create a formative and empathic awareness, remove the stigma and ignorance around the condition.
The project has enabled us to work and learn from another HMT funded project, specifically a choir which we have piloted for a number of weeks within an existing group for people with Dementia and proved especially positive. We look forward to further partnership work with HMT and their projects so we can evolve our existing support and knowledge for people with Dementia and their families and be seen as a beacon for Dementia support within the area.