The 2nd May 2019 celebrated the official launch of Dementia Club UK and BETTER dementia club at Barnet Copthall Leisure centre. Lisa, Mark, Marina and Andreas arrived early to set up the room which was in one of the large studios.
The tables were beautifully decorated with tablecloths and flowers, the pull up banners were set up and the sandwiches and cakes were arranged. Some green balloons were also blown up with the BETTER logo and these added very nicely to all the decorations.
When everyone arrived, Lisa gave her welcome speech, giving a brief history of how she set up the dementia club and the aims of the charity to continue raising awareness and also to open more dementia clubs as the need is great. She also mentioned about upcoming events and had flyers displayed. Lisa then welcomed members and announced the special guests below;
- The Mayor of Barnet – Councillor Reuben Thompstone
- Rhiannon Morgan – Regional Health Manager GLL
- Christopher Parker – General Manager Barnet Copthall Leisure Centre
- Gillian Kelly – Partnership Manager GLL
- Jalpa Assani – Community Sports Manager – GLL Barnet
- Mary Hamilton – Physical Activity and Health Manager Barnet Copthall
- Annalisa Cellini – Club Lead GLL
- The Rotary Club of Mill Hill President Desmond and other Rotarians Jeanette and Jane and John.
- Courtney Warden – Sport & Physical Activity Service Manager – London Borough of Barnet
- Dylon Donaldson – commissioning group from Public Health London Borough of Barnet
- And of course our Trustees – Mark and Dr Angela
The Mayor of Barnet then followed with a brief message, followed by a few words from Rhiannon. It was time to cut the cake and as with any cutting of the cake traditions, Lisa always puts a firework candle to celebrate. The Mayor then had some help in cutting the cake from Lisa, Jalpa, Rhiannon and Annalisa.
Lisa announced to everyone the beautiful celebration cake made and donated by Julianna Martins – Head Chef at Carlton Court Care Home and her team. Julianna also made some very small cupcakes with the BETTER logo and the Dementia Club UK logo. A huge thank you to Julianna for making these cakes which is really appreciated by Dementia Club UK.
It was then time for Annalisa’s dance group to perform and they were really fantastic dressed up with their colourful silk sashes around their waists and other props. They danced a few old time musical classics which everyone really enjoyed.
We also had a birthday to celebrate today as it was one of the members Margaret who came with her husband and son. Lisa as usual is always prepared with any birthdays as the tradition is a firework candle. Everyone sang and wished Maggie a happy birthday and when the firework candle was set off it unfortunately also set the fire alarm. I think Maggie and her family will remember this in amusement! Maggie then enjoyed a little dance with her son John. Everyone was then ready for sandwiches which were really delicious (from M&S of course!).
It was then time for Elvis who arrived and was getting himself ready. Pete Webb who acts as Elvis is always a great hit with everyone and was wearing his whites today.
Some of our members were also dressed up today in fancy dress up costumes and hats - Kevin and Melissa were both dressed to party and ready to dance. Kevin brought his mother in law Mable in a wheelchair. Nothing was going to stop Mable attending today as she is still recovering from a new hip operation. Mable was cheerful and very happy especially when Elvis was very close singing to her.
Elvis interacted with many of the members and our Rotarians from Mill Hill Rotary Club were also receiving special attention from Elvis. The atmosphere was electric as Elvis moved around singing. This was a very successful launch.
My thanks goes out to; Marina and Andreas for coming early to help with the set up, Christopher Parker the General Manager and his team for setting up the tables and chairs, Jalpa and Annalisa for blowing up balloons and generally helping with the set up, Our Trustees – Mark and Dr Angela for their help and support throughout the session, Annalisa and her dance group for a fantastic performance. Members commented how they would love to see them again.
A big thank you to Carlton Court Care Home for donating the celebration cake and cupcakes which were delicious and enjoyed And a big thank you to everyone that came to support the launch.