It’s always an honour to attend a prestigious award ceremony, especially when you’ve also been shortlisted for an award, so we were delighted to receive an invitation to attend the 9th National Dementia Care Awards 2018 on November 8th in Brighton.
The awards were created to celebrate the very best people and achievements in dementia care and Unforgettable’s new Music Player & Digital Radio was a finalist in one of the most competitive and vital categories: Outstanding Dementia Care Product. Two years ago, Unforgettable was extremely proud to win the award for Dementia Care Innovation, so we were thrilled to be shortlisted again.
Barbara, our Caregiver-in-Chief, and Adam, who’s Head of New Products and Innovation both went along to the award ceremony and glittering gala dinner held at the Hilton Brighton Metropole. The event was attended by many people living with dementia and family carers, and professionals working in the field of dementia care. Richard Hawkins, editor-in-chief of the Journal of Dementia Care compered the evening and the awards were presented by former MP and Communities and Local Government minister Hazel Blears, who’s mother, Dorothy, had dementia.
The award ceremony was part of the 13th UK Dementia Congress at which Adam and Barbara gave a presentation about involving people living with dementia and family carers in the designing and developing the new Unforgettable Music Player & Digital Radio.
On 15th November, Adam and Barbara participated in a discussion hosted by the South London Health Innovation Network about the government’s Healthy Ageing Grand Challenge. Details are still awaited as to how this initiative will be taken forward: Unforgettable is preparing the way to make a contribute, helping to shape a future for older people that promotes healthy and fulfilling lifestyles.
Adam gave a guest lecturer at Loughborough University about designing for dementia for students on the Inclusive Design course. Adam also met with people with dementia and carers at Lewisham Mindcare to gather feedback about Unforgettable’s products and to generate new ideas.
As Caregiver-in-Chief, Barbara gives talks about dementia and caring to a wide range of community groups and organisations, connecting with people living with dementia, family carers and professionals working in the dementia care field. Barbara is always happy to attend events and local meetings, bringing with her products to demonstrate, if requested to do so. Barbara also invites people to contribute guest blogs to the Unforgettable website, and she writes a regular blog herself, often focusing on interesting people she has met and projects and services that are making a difference to people’s lives. If you would like to get in touch with Barbara, please email her at email@example.com
In November, Barbara attended a conference hosted by Trent Dementia in Nottingham called ‘What Matters to Me – Life with Dementia’, which was organised and delivered by people living with dementia, in collaboration with Innovations in Dementia and DEEP. Dementia diarists, George Rook and Shelagh Robinson, co-chaired the conference and platform speakers and workshop facilitators were exclusively people living with dementia, offering rich learning opportunities and insights into the lived experience of dementia.
Barbara offered the Unforgettable Music Player & Digital Radio to a number of people living with dementia & their relatives, at this event, with the aim of gathering feedback on its functionality and usefulness. We are particularly keen to explore the helpfulness (or otherwise) of the customisable features, both for people living at home and in residential care settings. We are grateful to everyone who volunteered to review this new product, we will be sharing contributions in future newsletters and on social media.
Our other new products, which launched mid-November, have been well received. The Unforgettable Life Story book is proving a very popular Christmas gift, receiving lots of positive feedback from caregivers and visitors to the site. It’s such an innovative product (we haven’t seen another one quite like it) that we’ve also created a video explaining how it works and why it’s such a great way to help someone with dementia to tell their life story. You can see the video here.
We’re really pleased that our new caregivers’ products are proving popular too. Unforgettable is passionate about supporting family carers, and we hope these gorgeous reasonably priced products are doing something to help. We’ve just put together a beautiful caregiver’s gift box -appropriately called Hug in a Box – which could make a perfect Christmas or any-time-of-year present.
Fun fact: Dogs v Cats
Our very popular Precious Pets range continues to be a steady best-seller. Most popular of all is the very cute black and white kitten, followed closely by the King Charles Spaniel. Overall however, dogs still outsell cats. It seems we remain a nation of dog lovers.