Ruskin open day success

Around 100 people came to an open day at Carlisle’s dementia assessment unit Ruskin recently.

A number of services were on hand to offer expert advice to carers, families or anyone interested in learning more about the unit.

Rikki Dawson is the ward Manager at Ruskin she said:

“We were keen to hold this open day to give people a chance to come and see the unit and to learn more about dementia and the support that is available. We had a number of different agencies here including the Alzheimer’s society, Age UK and Riverside Careline all of which can offer support that many people may not realise is out there. We also had representatives from our own services that work together for the dementia patients. “

Carlisle-based Alzheimer’s Society dementia support worker Judith Reay said:

“These kinds of events are important so that when people are diagnosed with dementia they understand the amount of support that is available and the range of support.”

“There is support for each stage of the dementia process; support while you are waiting for a diagnosis, once you have your diagnosis and for family and carers there is support too. And not just from the Alzheimer’s Society; from a range of agencies.

“There is a stigma still with Alzheimer’s and dementia but thankfully I think that stigma is reducing; more people are aware that you can have a happy and enjoyable life after you have been diagnosed.”

Alzheimer’s Society volunteer Margaret Irving echoed Judith’s sentiments.

“The message that we want to convey to people across Cumbria this week is that life doesn’t end when dementia begins and it’s important to get that message out in Cumbria because we have more than the national average of people living in the county with dementia,’ Margaret added.

‘The Alzheimer’s Society runs the Dementia Friends programme and this aims to increase general public awareness of dementia and what everyone can do to help. Can you imagine how much easier it would be if the person in the bank, post office or supermarket knew that little bit more about dementia and could help someone who was confused or help a carer because they could see they were finding it difficult?.’