The dedication and efforts of the thousands of informal carers across the UK who care for a loved one with dementia are to be recognised by a new national campaign.
Dementia UK and leading home care provider SweetTree Home Care Services have joined forces to launch National Dementia Carers Day, an annual awareness day that will recognise and share what it means to be a dementia carer.
National Dementia Carers Day 2014 will fall on Sunday 14 September, within World Alzheimer’s Month. This year the focus will be ‘Creating Special Moments’ and informal carers are being asked to share the unique ways in which they create special moments for a loved one with dementia.
Over the coming months, all the tips and ideas for helping someone live well with the condition will be collected on a dedicated website www.nationaldementiacarersday.
Members of the public will also be encouraged to create a special moment for a dementia carer they know and to show their support as part of the national day.
The campaign was officially launched by Hilda Hayo, chief executive of Dementia UK and Nicki Bones, operations director at SweetTree Home Care Services at this years’ Alzheimer’s Show. It already has the backing of many high profile figures, including Baroness Greengross OBE, chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Dementia.
Hilda Hayo from Dementia UK said: “Dementia can be a very distressing disease, which places enormous pressure on families. It’s so important that anyone who is caring for a relative with dementia has emotional and psychological support, particularly through periods of transition.
“The national day and Creating Special Moments campaign are designed to inspire community spirit to help build dementia friendly communities – one of the cornerstones of the government’s Dementia Challenge. By highlighting the efforts of these often forgotten carers, sharing their insights and showing that they are not alone, we can start to improve the support they receive.”
There are currently 800,000 people living with dementia in the UK, two thirds of which are living in the community according to The Alzheimer’s Society. With these figures expected to reach 1 million by 2021, the government launched its Dementia Challenge in 2012 with the aim of creating dementia friendly communities and improving health, care and research.
Nicki Bones commented: “National Dementia Carers Day and the Creating Special Moments campaign will recognise and unite the thousands of family members who provide innovative and compassionate support for a loved one with dementia.
“This care can often go unnoticed and unrecognised. Not only do these informal dementia carers carry out an incredible job supporting their loved ones, they also hold a wealth of invaluable knowledge. We want to recognise and share this knowledge, whilst celebrating the positive impact that informal carers have on the lives of those with dementia.”
For more information and to get involved, please visit www.nationaldementiacarersday.