Many dementia charities and organisations only focus on the practical or medical needs of the people they work with. At Effro, we believe there’s more that can be done; that recognising the needs, preferences and individuality of each person creates opportunities for a better life.
Rather than taking a purely risk-averse approach, we work with individuals to explore the things they’re interested in. We provide a safe and supportive framework for people living with dementia to focus on the most enjoyable aspects of their lives: reflecting on happy memories, revisiting favourite places and reigniting personal passions.
We believe the results of this approach speak for themselves. Through our support and the use of techniques such as reminiscence and cognitive stimulation therapy, the individuals we work with can continue to live fulfilling and purposeful lives.
Dementia isn’t a single condition: it’s an umbrella term that describes a number of progressive conditions that affect the brain.
There are over 200 recognised conditions and causes that fall under the category of dementia. The most common of these include Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, frontotemporal dementia and dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB). It’s also possible to have more than one type of dementia.
Some of the most common symptoms of dementia include memory problems, struggling to process information, communication difficulties and changes in mood or personality. And dementia isn’t only diagnosed in older people – early onset dementia can affect individuals before the age of 65, impacting lives in a variety of ways.
While there is no known cure for dementia or its related conditions, a range of approaches and therapies have been shown to improve the lives of people who live with it. These include reminiscence therapy (using the senses to recall previous events and experiences) and cognitive stimulation therapies (structured activities that help people living with dementia to improve their memory and thinking skills).
Some people may respond positively to the therapies outlined above, while others might prefer a different approach. If you feel the services we offer at Effro aren’t right for you, there are other charities and organisations that provide support – we’ve provided link to them here.
To learn more about dementia and how to support those living with it, get in touch and book one of our dementia awareness training sessions.
How we’re changing perceptions of dementia
People living with dementia must be recognised as unique individuals, living with a range of different conditions; we shouldn't expect the same approach to work for everyone. Every individual has a particular set of needs and interests – at Effro, we tailor our support to recognise the preferences of every person we work with.
The language we use to speak about dementia has a significant effect on how it is perceived in society. For example, the people we work with aren’t ‘dementia sufferers’ or ‘patients’ – we prefer to use the term ‘people living with dementia’, signifying that someone’s personality isn’t defined by their diagnosis.
Helping the public to better understand dementia and its related conditions is an important goal for us at Effro. We act as volunteers for the Alzheimer’s Society to provide Dementia Friends information sessions, helping everyone from police officers to supermarket workers to better understand the reality of dementia.
More can be done to support people living with dementia. We actively fight against outdated public views of dementia and seek to change the way people living with dementia are treated. Our individual-focused, research-backed services show what can be achieved with the right approach.
Volunteer with us
There are a variety of ways to get involved with our work at Effro. Our volunteers gain valuable experience and career development opportunities, as well as the satisfaction of making a difference in the lives of people with dementia.