Come along and see us at the Community Solutions Fun Day Elmfield Hall 10am all welcome.
Today we took ourselves off to the Arthur Wilson Centre, Clayton-Le-Moors, where we had a stall at a Craft & Dabble Fair. There were lot’s of beautiful, clever, lovingly handcrafted items on the stalls there. We took Twiddle Muffs, always a great talking point, Fairtrade Memory/Keepsake boxes and other Items. The afternoon was rounded off by a visit from the Mayor & Mayoress and we got a couple of great photographs with them. Would like to say a big thank you to Sarah Barton for an interesting and fun afternoon.
Accrington Town Centre, letting people know that we will be at 1st Call Hyndburn, Accrington Arndale Unit every Wednesday. If you have a question/query about Dementia, Dementia services, Carer support, Groups or activities for people living with Dementia, or would like a chat please come in and see us, and if we can’t answer your query there and then we will do our best to have your answer by the following week.
Sunday 21st: we opened at 10.30 lots milling around, people coming over to talk, others saying hello because we have got to know them over the weekend, everywhere very busy and loud more people arriving on day tickets for Justin Bieber. On Sunday afternoon there was a horrific Motor Accident on the M6 and everybody, Festival goers and stall holders were told they couldn’t leave until the lunchtime Monday (that meant all people on day tickets as well as weekenders). The organisers decided to leave entertainment on until extra late to keep everyone amused (4am), don’t know what the day comers, did for sleep or warmth it wasn’t the warmest of nights. We were kept busy with lots of talking, it’s amazing how many people open up with us and tell us that it is the first time they have really talked about it, not many people know how many different types of dementia that there are, some are very surprised to hear that it isn’t a natural part of ageing and that not all dementia’s are Alzheimer’s. Liam and Ste have done a couple of haircuts and beard trims and thrown a few Frisbees into the crowd, good fun was had by all this afternoon. All is very lively and loud… Closed up at 7.30pm
Justin Bieber is on about 8.30-9pm.
Monday 22nd: up at 7am, cup of tea then dismantled Gazebo and loaded everything back into motorhome, by 10am everywhere looked so surreal with half dismantled fair rides, lots of space where stalls had been and it was so very eerily quiet, which after all the noise over the weekend made you feel a bit strange. We weren’t allowed to leave the site until midday, then it was onto M6 and homeward bound, lots of stop start queueing up to Manchester then it was a breeze got home about 6pm. Motorhome unloaded at various places, then home to our own beds, and the cat’s.
What a brilliant 6 day’s these have been, for many reasons, most of all for the people we met and talked to. Thank you to all those people who came to speak to us, I hope you went away more aware and enlightened about Dementia.
We would also like to give big thanks to Roadhouse Productions Sue Fielding and Dick Vernon for giving Action For Dementia the opportunity to be a part of the 21st V Festival, and hope we made enough of an impression to be remembered and allowed back next year.
Lastly but not least, Big Big Thanks to the Big Lottery Fund for making our events possible, supporting us to raise people’s awareness of Dementia, enabling us to reach out to all age groups, genders, races and faiths, 16-70 yrs. of age helping us to keep Dementia being talked about & not forgotten.
Dementia is a difficult and feared subject but with funding from the Big Lottery Fund we have been able to “Get out There” in town centres, large events, festivals and talk to a lot of people about Dementia, the language used for Dementia now, Dementia friendly communities & businesses and volunteering in the community, we find such a lot of people just want to talk and/or to understand more about their experience of Dementia. We look forward to carrying on with our Big Lottery Fund project and reaching out to many more people. Once again Big Thankyou’s from all at Action For Dementia.
Saturday 20th: opened at 10-30am people still bleary eyed from night before but by lunchtime things had livened up. We had lots of people passing us many of whom came for a chat and a couple of guys had haircuts, again everyone we spoke to knew of someone with dementia, one young guy told us of his uncle who was only 42 when he was diagnosed with the disease. People were asking lots of questions and I do know we made a difference to their understanding of Dementia and dispelled a few myths, people very supportive. Fairground was in full swing, seemed to get louder as it got later, torrential rain, closed up at 7pm. Went off to see Rhianna at around 8pm, she was very very good.
Friday 19th: finishing touches to all rides and stalls, dance tent, and stages, you can feel the excitement building, music being played at different volumes, a real hotch potch of noise. The Festival goers are let in at around 10.30am and slowly but surely the site started to fill up. Lots of smiling faces, looking like they just want to put their tents up, and get started on a fantastic weekend of music, dance and fun. We opened our stall at around 12.30pm and stayed open until 6.30pm, quite a few people were curious about us and came over for a chat, after which, they got what we were there for and what we were about. Everybody we spoke to had had experience of Dementia with a family member, neighbour, or a family member of someone they knew, this was the case all over the weekend. I really hope that some, if not all the people we spoke to over this weekend get back in touch with us through the website, Facebook or email. Very heavy rain on and off throughout late afternoon and evening.
We arrived at a lovely sunny warm Weston Park Staffordshire on Wednesday the 17th Aug at about 6pm, got our bearings, put up Gazebo and moved stuff out of motorhome so we could move around in there, we then cooked some food and slept.
Thursday 18th: another lovely sunny day was spent setting up stall, barber’s chair, banners etc. had to wait for electricity, not connected until around 1pm, didn’t dare use any more of motorhome battery, although I don’t think we had used it enough to have anywhere near drained it, we also had to have fire and safety checks on the stall. Sorted out the motorhome so that 4 people could live and sleep in it for the next few days, found some bazzing showers and took full advantage before the crowds arrived. I have to say all that all the organisers and security we came across or dealt with were very very helpful
V Festival Weston Park
Approx. 250.000 people were expected across 2 parks in Chelmsford and Staffordshire, all the bands, artists, comedians etc. that played in Chelmsford on one day, came over to Staffordshire the next day and vice versa and shuttle busses moved the people between the parks. We were at V North which is in Weston Park Staffordshire.
Everybody here was very excited, it took a lot of preparation, and as we only had confirmation that we had got a space at the Festival about 4 weeks ago it was all go with prep for it, we had a motorhome to take the four of us, our stock and all the equipment and to sleep in.
We took our printed Action For Dementia, Big Lottery Funded Pro 40 Gazebo and our banners. Our very visible presence attracted a constant stream of interest, our Wristbands were sought after and many could be seen around the Festival with Action For Dementia t/shirts and Action For Dementia Frisbees, which was fantastic, and we also showed off our fair trade memory boxes and bags. For an added attraction to our stall Liam our Barber (trustee/volunteer) and Ste (friend & co-worker/volunteer) gave beard and hair trims. There were no leaflets given out, no plastic bags used, as there are strict rules about the conservation of the sites and the use of plastic. We did however have a lot to talk about and a lot of information we could pass on to people who were interested, we were open from around 10.30am up to 7-8pm in the evening, after 8pm people were getting ready for the headline acts, Saturday was Rhianna, Sunday was Justin Beiber ( 4 newBleibers created). I am a little upset that i didn’t manage a celeb photo, after the James Martin Coup at Skipton Food&Drink Festival, I felt quite confident that i would be able to surprise some poor unsuspecting celebrity, but the security there was just to good.
We had a brilliant time at the Festival spoke to many many people of all ages, from 16-60yrs of age, all of whom had known someone or knew and cared for someone with Dementia. We hope that all those people who engaged with us over the V weekend went away with more awareness and understanding of Dementia, we also hope that those people who shed a tear and those who were directly involved with caring for a person living with Dementia left feeling happier just to have talked openly about it to someone when they least expected to.
We would like to send big Thank you’s to Sue Fielding and Dick Vernon for giving us the opportunity to be a part of 21st V Festival, hope were allowed back next year.
Lastly but certainly not least the Biggest Thank-You goes to the Big Lottery Fund For helping make this and all our other Dementia Awareness events possible, we really have engaged with a lot of people over the course of the last few months.
This is where we were on Saturday 30th & Sunday 31st July, It was attended by approx 12,000 people, there were celebrity chefs The Hairy Bikers on the Saturday, Justin met the small dark one in the corridor and had a pleasant chat but didn’t manage to get a photo, then on the Sunday it was the Famous James Martin who is also patron of the festival. I managed to get my photo taken with the man, there was a Q&A with him and my question which i got in first was will you have your photo taken with me for my charities website, he asked what charity, i showed the back of my t/shirt and he said yes i definitely will have my photo taken with you, so after the Q&A i went to the back of the balcony to the enclosure where he was and was pushed through the crowds of women wanting to get at him and ended up in the enclosure with him and the security and got a great pic, the only thing is you can’t see the Action For Dementia on t/shirt very well, but still, very pleased we got the photo. It was a busy event we were in one of the quietest isles, but still plenty going on around us, and people were friendly and genuinely interested in talking to us. I think we did the charity proud, we don’t jump on people aggressively and try to make them talk or donate, we wait for them to come to us, it takes a while sometimes but once one has been seen talking to us others come as well. We had many conversations with a real cross section of people about their experiences of dementia and dementia care. I believe what were doing is definitely necessary in raising awareness of Dementia, to be face to face with people helps a lot of them to open up and talk and also to listen and take information in. All in all a busy and talkative weekend.
By becoming a Dementia Friend/Champion you can make a big difference in your community both socially and in business making it a safer, more user friendly, more tolerant place to be for people with dementia, and many other vulnerable people.