It’s Dementia Awareness Week from 14 – 21 May. To help raise awareness of this disease and highlight the importance of ‘seeing the person’ before seeing their dementia, we’ve asked some of our volunteer Dementia Befrienders about the person they visit and what they get out of the relationship.

Sabine said that her befriendee taught her "how to adapt successfully to changing circumstances and not torment yourself about the things you can't change". While Stephen enjoys his befriendee's "warmth and kindness".

Read our Dementia Befrienders' stories.

Dementia Befrienders visit socially isolated older people with dementia or memory impairement. These visits can make a difference in many ways, from helping someone continue with a much-loved hobby to providing a connection with the local community, and the social interaction increases the older person’s wellbeing and sense of self. 

Watch our short film ‘Loving Life’ about the importance of a person-centred approach in dementia services.

Find out more about our dementia support.

 

Kind, funny and feisty  - she knows what she wants but is shy when socialising in big groups.                      

 

What they have taught me: Patience

 

What I admire about the person I visit: She is very sweet and kind. She is genuinely interested in people and still dreams of traveling even though she can't. 

       

What I enjoy about her company: She's funny, dry but very sweet and kind. A very authentic person with a lovely smile.

 

 

Sabine

 

How I would describe the person I visit: 
Clever, charming, lovely, great hostess, resilient, interested in people and a music lover. She has a no nonsense approach to life – “change what you can and arrange yourself with what you can't change”. She knows her mind and speaks it

 

What she has taught me: 
How to adapt successfully to changing circumstances and not torment yourself about the things you can't change.

 

What I admire about the person I visit:  
How she picked herself up when her husband died at a young age and she had two young children. She is very resilient and very happy in her own company (as long as she can listen to classical music) but also really enjoys other people's company

 

What I enjoy about her company:
She is very interested in what goes on around her and can be very witty, sharp and sarcastic, which I think is great.

 

Issy

How I would describe the person I visit: 

She is a kind woman who loves people, especially children, and enjoys laughing and flirting with the men around. She likes to chat and laugh and enjoys a hug. She also loves flowers and being out in warm sunshine.