Research carried out by Age UK Lancashire over the last three years revealed that older people in the area living with dementia were concerned about a lack of support and advice, as well as the impact that dementia was having on their families and partners. Age UK's project, which set out to address these issues, decided it was important to treat dementia sufferers as individuals, so the term 'family member' was used instead of 'carer.'
During their research, Age UK also discovered that most people living with a partner or family member with dementia wanted to be able to do things together and have fun, and that too few opportunities for this to happen existed.
To solve this problem, Age UK Lancashire worked in collaboration with the Dukes Theatre to run special film screenings for those with dementia. The cinema was adapted to support the needs of those with dementia, with additional volunteers specially trained and drafted in to help.
The first film, Singing in the Rain, was screened back in February 2013, but nobody could have predicted how popular the project would become. Today, films show every six weeks, with many people arriving early for drinks or lunch before the screening. The project has since introduced creative arts workshops aimed at those with dementia.
Pat Craig, whose husband has dementia, commented, “It was something normal that we were doing together. I really enjoyed the whole thing. It's lovely meeting people who are not afraid to talk to us.”
At The Good Care Group, we find that using our award winning live-in care gives family members the opportunity to spend quality time with their loved one, where the day to day care is looked after by a dedicated carer. This means that there is more time for them to engage in enjoyable activities such as the cinema, and that a carer can really help when going on outings. This can raise the quality of life for dementia sufferers, and their families, something that can be far more difficult to achieve when compared to living in a residential care home.