We want to thank Kevin who chaired this evening's Carers Session. There were 28 participants at this evenings DCUK Carers meeting.

7:00- 7:30 was a general open forum on matters on the Carer’s mind.

The subject of respite vouchers was discussed so Carers can have a break with the cost of respite care being partially funded. To obtain these a Social Worker would need to conduct a Carers Assessment to assess the eligibility.

A participant raised concern with eye tests for a dementia sufferer not giving the full picture during the examination. It was advised to warn the optician in advance so they can take this into account. Andrew from Carlton Court Care Home advised they use Blink Eye Care who are skilled at dealing with dementia. They can carry out home visits. Hital is the best contact and can be emailed This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 020 8816 8549. Andrew further emphasised the importance of sight with dementia as this fading with the brain will accelerate the Dementia condition.

It was established through www.gov.uk website, you can apply for 4 months supply in January for free vitamin D tablets.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/at-risk-groups-to-receive-free-winter-supply-of-vitamin-d

7:30- 8:00 Andrew completed the training on social interaction with dementia. This was carried over from the previous week where given the immensity of the subject needed further discussion

The power of reminiscence was highlighted. Music is the main source for this. It was also suggested looking at old photos or having a memory box would help engage the mind.

The issue of Sundowners was bought up. This is part of day where the Carer will need to recognise things are not quiet and the mind of the person living with Dementia is disturbed. It was advised to try to relax them and immerse them with an activity. It was suggested it can be helpful mentioning people who have passed away in the present tense.

The PowerPoint slides were sent last week. Anyone who has not received these and would like to assess them please contact Lisa.

8.00-8.30 Q&A for Andrew based on training or other matters on our mind.

One participant stated reciting the Lord’s Prayer in the morning was good for spiritually and remembering the words good exercise for the mind.

A Carer mentioned the issue of their cared for wanting to go home somewhere else although they are at home. Andrew advised not to argue but go with their flow and where appropriate distract the person to divert the conversation. This can be challenging and we should be kind to ourselves if we do not get it totally right.

It was further encouraged as Carers we should to try to think of and chose engaging activities during challenging moments.

The concern of not taking liquids and risk of UTI’s was raised again   Dr Angela advised to disguise liquids using jellies, sorbet and soups. Sometimes a straw provides an incentive drink.

A massive thank you to Dr Angela and Andrew for their invaluable constructive feedback throughout the session for the many issues raised by the Carers.

We had 26 members today. The Karaoke session started at 2pm with new song requests and then the chat session started at 2.30pm.

Lisa welcomed everyone and also welcomed the new members and reminded everyone about the carers group session later this evening.

Ian James our music entertainer then joined us and as usual Ian is always happy to have a chat with everyone before he starts. Ian’s music today was a variety of music favourites which members enjoyed singing along. Ian also surprised some of our Italian members when he started to sing some songs with some Italian words. It was a wonderful surprise and Ian informed us later that he could also try some other songs next week with other languages too. Everyone always look forward to seeing Ian as his choice of music and passion is electrifying.

Rachel Karbaron was then ready to start with her exercises. Members look forward to seeing Rachel as she provides exercises that everyone can participate and her music is also great. Her dance routines towards the end showing some salsa steps and then disco dancing to ‘Night Fever’ John Travolta style is also something members really look forward to every week. Finishing off with a Hawaiian cool down is also a treat.

Lisa then continued with the session with a quiz – 10 questions about TV Adverts. The members with the highest score was Pam and John and Chris and Gina. Lisa then called the Bingo numbers and the winner today was Helen and Chrystalla. 

We had 25 members today. The usual Karaoke started at 2pm followed by the chat session at 2.30pm. Lisa welcomed everyone and mentioned that it was St. David’s Day and was wearing a daffodil which is the National Flower of Wales. There was lots of general chatting and then Katie Paine our music entertainer joined us . Katie’s music today was music from around the world which was very enjoyable and members sang along to some of them.

Eon Walters then joined us for the exercises. Everyone loves Eon’s workout and especially his choice of music which is really motivating.

Lisa then showed a short funny video and then Kevin had some Family Fortunes questions. This is always great fun with Kevin. The winner for the quiz with the highest score was Jackie and Joan. It was then time for the Bingo and the winner today was John and Audrey.

It was a lovely session. Thank you Kevin for doing the quiz.

We had 21 members today. The karaoke session was enjoyed as usual and then it was the chat time. Lisa welcomed everyone and also wished those celebrating the Jewish Festival of PURIN – Happy Purim. Lisa also welcomed Desmond from Rotary Club Mill Hill and also Melvyn and Andrew Mills.

There was a switch today so we had Richard Kravetz who started with Yoga exercises first as he had an appointment later. Richard then continues with a quiz and today’s quiz was music questions. The members with the highest score was Chris and Gina.

James Le Bec was then ready to start and today’s theme was country songs especially as Kevin had his country and western hat on. James sang a couple of other song favourites and then it was time for the music quiz. The music quiz was a little challenging but everyone still enjoyed it.

It was then time for Bingo and the winner today was Kathy and Douglas.

We had 29 members at the meeting. Lisa welcomed everyone and gave a special welcome to our visitor Dr Rhonda Cohen (Head of Department: Sport Science and Rehabilitation at Middlesex University and sport and exercise Psychologist BPS and HCPC). Lisa also welcomed the Trustees and also Andrew Wrensch.

Lisa introduced Rhonda informing everyone how she conducted a research study about the dementia club in 2015 to evaluate its benefits of physical activity and other activities and its effectiveness with people living with dementia and their carers. Lisa asked Rhonda how she coped during the pandemic and also the University. Rhonda said it has been difficult and especially for the students living alone as many had been affected with mental health issues.

Lisa then read out a lovely letter she received today from Theresa Villiers MP saying how pleased she was that dementia Club UK were nominated Charity of the Year in Barnet. Theresa also congratulated Lisa on her work with the dementia club especially during the pandemic and also how she was also pleased that the ‘visiting in care homes’ has now moved forward and she would continue to talk to the Ministers. This letter will be on our website.

There was about 15 minutes left before Andrew started his seminar which gave members the opportunity for a general chat and Lisa to inform everyone to note in their diaries the other visitors joining on the 9th March (Mr Nigel Wray) and on the 16th March (Professor David Jefferys)

Lisa then introduced Andrew to start his seminar which today was about “Wellbeing & Activities”

As usual the seminar was very informative and interesting and as it ran a little over time and didn’t give much opportunity for everyone to ask their questions, this topic will continue for next week and also Andrew will introduce a new topic – “Dementia Awareness”

Lisa thanked her special visitor Dr Rhonda and also Andrew for his great seminar and also the Trustees and everyone.