Lucy Whitman discusses her book “People with Dementia Speak Out”
Lucy Whitman discusses her book “People with Dementia Speak Out”

Today we had Lucy Whitman who came to present her book “People with Dementia Speak Out”. Lucy came with Andy Bellisario and her mum Dizi Conti, step dad Derek Norman and Lucy’s cousin Jo Farley. Also attended was Jane Moore. Jane read a story about the life of her mother, Lorna, which was very moving and in some parts funny. Lucy Whitman summarized to say that people with dementia is not the end, you can still have quality of life. This prompted one of the members of the group who got up to speak and say that she did not feel that dementia has reduced her quality of life.

Tija Hubej shows some dance steps to the Dementia Club UK
Tija Hubej shows some dance steps to the Dementia Club UK

The book reading session was followed by dancer Tija Hubej who studied Dance and Music at Ljubljana in Slovenia, She has been dancing since the age of 3 years old. Members were able to learn various dance steps from Italy, Hungary and Spain and also famous ballet dances. This inspired all the members to continue dancing to further Greek Music led by one of the members who knew the Zorba dance.

The Zorba Dance at Dementia Club UK
The Zorba Dance at Dementia Club UK
Sadie from Visbuzz showing the device
Sadie from Visbuzz showing the device

Zoe Garbett from Barnet Council and Sadie from Visbuzz came to show us a new communication device called Visbuzz. This is a one touch technology on a tablet. Visbuzz aims to connect people who don’t have social contact by providing them with a simple tablet which only allows video calls to family, friends, practice nurses etc. For more information visit:

http://visbuzz.com

Barnet Council are commissioning 100 of the devices for a pilot to residents who fit the criteria. See Barnet's web site: 

http://barnet.gov.uk/citizen-home/search.html?keywords=visbuzz

Zoe Garbett from Barnet Council
Zoe Garbett from Barnet Council
Sgt John Hourihan Met Police
Sgt John Hourihan Met Police

Sgt John Hourihan, from Brunswick Park and Totteridge Neighbourhood Policing gave a talk about Community Safety providing tips for avoiding ‘scams’. He spoke about ‘smart water’ to mark and trace your goods if they are ever stolen. He had various safety products for doors and windows. Everybody was very interested and a lot of questions were asked on various policing matters.

We are delighted to announce that we celebrated today not only the fact that this is our 4th Dementia Club in the Borough of Barnet but also this is the first dementia café opening in a Synagogue open to all faiths. This is a new partnership with Sha’arei Tsedek and a new Interfaith venture. As we live in a society which is so multicultural, we believe it is important that we work together to combat the challenges in life. Dementia hits us all.

Launch of 4th Dementia Club UK venue at Sha'arei Tsedek with special guest Lady Poppy Cooksey Master of The Guild of Freemen of the City of London
Launch of 4th Dementia Club UK venue at Sha'arei Tsedek with special guest Lady Poppy Cooksey Master of The Guild of Freemen of the City of London

We had a special guest – Lady Poppy Cooksey who is the Master of the Guild of Freemen of the City of London. She selected the Dementia Club UK as one of her beneficiaries from her year as Master. Lady Cooksey presented a cheque to the Dementia Club UK. Lady Cooksey spoke about her year as Master and the fact that she is the 7th lady to be Master. This is a great achievement and everyone congratulated her. This followed with some questions and answers as people wanted to know what the Guild of the City of London was about and also about the various Liveries and great City Halls. Everyone was also fascinated by her impressive chain and badge representing the Guild of Freemen of the City of London. Other guests included;

Rabbi Judith Levitt

Rabbi James Baaden

Father Gregory Platten – All Saints Church in Whetstone next to the Synagogue

Richard Woolf – Chair of Sha’arei Tsedek

Cllr Lisa Rutter receiving a cheque from Lady Poppy Cooksey for Dementia Club UK
Cllr Lisa Rutter receiving a cheque from Lady Poppy Cooksey for Dementia Club UK

Rabbi James Baaden wanted to say a few words to express how delighted he was with our new partnership and to commend our new Interfaith venture. We then had exercise and dance to music which everyone enjoyed.

    Rabbi James Baaden promoting the importance of the new partnership with Dementia Club UK and Sha’arei Tsedek
Rabbi James Baaden promoting the importance of the new partnership with Dementia Club UK and Sha’arei Tsedek

Dementia Club UK are looking for volunteers and GPs, please contact Lisa on 07956 858 913.

Dementia Club UK is now on Twitter and Facebook.

Lisa taking a trip down memory lane at the Dementia Club
Lisa taking a trip down memory lane at the Dementia Club
Tim Chivers, paramedic from the London Ambulance Service with defibrillator
Tim Chivers, paramedic from the London Ambulance Service with defibrillator