The search is on for Scotland’s most inspirational dementia projects.
The search is on across Scotland to recognise, promote and celebrate the inspirational achievements of those making a difference to support people living with dementia and their families, with the launch of Scotland’s Dementia Awards.
The Awards are a partnership between Alzheimer Scotland, NHS Education for Scotland and the Scottish Social Services Council. Now in its 7th year, the Awards are calling on professionals and the public to propel their dementia projects into the national limelight.
With six categories, the Awards recognise the country’s most innovative and ambitious dementia projects including: Best Hospital Care Initiative, Best Community Support Initiative, Best Innovation in Care Homes, Best Dementia Friendly Community Initiative, Best Educational Initiative and Most Innovative Partnership.
Previous winners have included HMP Shotts’ partnership with Alzheimer Scotland for Most Innovative Partnership, where staff and those in custodial care took part in dementia awareness and information sessions to support the prison’s ageing population. NHS Forth Valley scooped up the title of Best Acute Care Initiative in 2017, for improving the hospital journey and overall experience for people with dementia by reducing late transfers of patients.
Henry Simmons, Alzheimer Scotland’s Chief Executive, commented:
‘It has been a huge privilege to work with our partners over the last six years to deliver Scotland’s Dementia Awards. I am extremely proud that we have been able to showcase some of the wonderful approaches to care and support being pioneered here in Scotland and celebrate the dedication of those who work tirelessly to support people living with dementia.
‘As well as recognising the very best dementia projects and partnerships making a positive difference to the lives of so many people up and down the country, professionals and communities can share innovations, good practice and positive collaborations, helping us address stigma and break down barriers to ensure that nobody faces dementia alone.
‘We hope that 2018 will be a great success and we invite people from all sectors to enter and help us shine the spotlight on Scotland’s best dementia projects and practice.’
Speaking on behalf of ‘Boogie at the Bar’, winners of last year’s Best Community Support Initiative, Jenny McCann, from Sport Aberdeen, says:
‘We never expected the Boogie at the Bar project to have the success its had. When we held the first Boogie event, we were worried that no one would turn up. When nearly 100 people came through the door on that first night and filled the dance floor of the Foundry Pub in Aberdeen, we realised we had come up with something special. Bill Duncan who is living with dementia and his wife Anne were instrumental in the projects success. The duo thought up the idea initially after missing getting out and having a proper dance but didn’t want a late night out nor did they want to go to a tea dance event.
‘We were so chuffed to be shortlisted and winning was the icing on the cake. It’s wonderful to get that recognition but it was also great to see how many other amazing initiatives are happening across the country that you don’t always hear about. We would encourage anyone to apply for Scotland’s Dementia Awards, no matter how small your project. It was a wonderful celebratory day to be part of and we look forward to the future of our project.’
Anne Duncan, founder of ‘Boogie at the Bar’, added:
‘Words can’t describe the sheer joy and astonishment we all felt when we heard we had won the award. Seeing my husband’s reaction when he understood we had all won the award, was truly wonderful and a moment to cherish. Boogie in the Bar has brought so much happiness to so many people and that very much includes ourselves. Winning the award has given credibility to our project and has encouraged others to have a go at setting up their own Boogie events. We are all looking forward to the future of the project.’
Scotland’s Dementia Awards provide an opportunity for professionals and communities to showcase the creativity, innovation and dedication taking place across communities to help make a difference to the lives of people with dementia and their families. Through the celebration of good ideas, shared practice and meaningful partnership working, the Awards programme demonstrates dementia policy at work in a sustainable way.
The closing date for all entries is 5pm on Friday 8 June 2018.
Winners will be announced at an awards ceremony held at the Glasgow Marriott Hotel on 20 September.