Our resident vlogger finds out how an Alzheimer’s Society support worker can provide information for carers of people with dementia.

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Are you a carer? Need some support? Then watch this vlog to find out how you can get support from the Alzheimer’s Society.

Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Emma Wild and I’m a dementia support worker for the Alzheimer’s Society. I go out and visit people with dementia or their carers and talk to them about their diagnosis and what I can do to help them. So that could be just explaining a simple symptom or it could be referring [them] to a different organisation that I think could help.

I’m also a CRISP facilitator. It stands for Carer Information Support Programme, so it’s specifically designed for carers. There’s CRISP1 which is for carers who are supporting someone with a diagnosis up to two years, and then CRISP2, [which] is after two years. And it’s an education programme really so that carers can learn more about dementia and support that person with a diagnosis much better.

My other role is a Peer Support Group Facilitator. So I support the Shrewsbury Carers Support Group once a month. And again it’s just for carers to come along to, to learn but also to also get mutual support from each other.

Who’s the support group for?

The carer of somebody with dementia, anybody can come. It’s accessible for any stage of dementia, so it could be that a wife comes because her husband has just had a diagnosis last week, or it could be that we’ve got carers who are coming who are still supporting people in care homes.

What do you do at the group?

A speaker [comes] every other month. Speakers [could] include somebody coming in to talk about benefits and what benefits carers of people with dementia can claim.

It could be about the actual diagnosis, so somebody from the memory service gave an excellent talk about how to deal with some of the most difficult symptoms that a carer might be managing.

A solicitor might come in to talk about Power of Attorney and paying for care, that kind of thing.

The rest of the time, I tend to choose a topic with the carers. I’ll make some suggestions and they’ll say whether or not they want to cover it. So we’ve done a talk on incontinence, on carer stress, those sort of things. But it’s got to be personal to the carers, and also they’ve got to want to talk about it, they want more time to talk. So they’ve said they want time to talk in small groups just to talk to each other and get to know each other. And that’s lovely because when I see that happening, I can see how useful that is, and listening to the conversation is lovely and the support there is just brilliant.

How do you find out about groups in your area?

You can go onto our website, www.alzheimers.org.uk and it will tell you all the local services that are available and the peer support groups that are run across the country. You can phone the national helpline on 0300 222 1122 and they will tell you everything that is happening.

Virginia: So a huge thanks to Emma for taking the time out to speak to us about the amazing work that her and her colleagues do to support people like my mum, and others, that care for loved ones with dementia. And don’t forget that if you want more information just go to their website or call their helpline number and they’ll be people there to answer your questions. See you next time!




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