Gwynedd Council’s DementiaGo scheme extended for two years
Gwynedd Council will continue to fund innovative community schemes to help those suffering from dementia, the cabinet has confirmed.
Meeting on Tuesday, decision makers approved a £200,000 bid to continue funding the ‘Dementia Go’ project for another two years, which supports people living with dementia and their carers to promote an enriched quality of life through more physical activity.
With to the initial funding drying up at the end of the current financial year, the cash injection means that it can now continue until March 2022.
Among the services providing are day classes and community support for residents living with various forms of dementia, through different activities in 12 community centres across the county.
These include physical activity classes, encouraging light physical exercises within care homes, and the training of groups and communities through the “Dementia friends” programme, offering a better knowledge and understanding of dementia condition while eliminating the stigma surrounding its various forms.
Dementia Go was recently recognised on a British level at the Alzheimer’s Society Awards in London after being nominated in the ‘Trailblazer of the Year’ category.
Following their recent nomination, Gwynedd’s DementiaGo programme manager, Emma Quaeck, said: “The DementiaGo programme offers physical activity sessions in a safe and understanding environment for people living with dementia and their carers.
“Some of these activities include exercises to help strengthen the body, improve balance, dancing, circuit training, gym work, playing table tennis, boccia and swimming.
“We have also been involved in establishing the Gwynedd Boccia league which has proved to be a great success.
“Boccia, which is a precision ball sport related to bowls and petanque, is becoming a popular activity played in by many local groups and organisations, and the great thing about the game is that everyone can have a go no matter what their health condition may be.”
Unanimously approving the bid during the cabinet meeting in Caernarfon on Tuesday, decision makers were told that the two year window would allow further research on the merits of the scheme and how much of a benefit it offers to those taking part in comparison to those who do not and if this impacts on their care package needs.
The report went on to note, “This will enable us to highlight the strengths of the programme in strengthening the individual’s well-being and, as a result, we hope to be able to provide evidence that the plan is making financial savings for the Council in the long term.
“Based on the cost of implementing the DementiaGo programme (approximately £100k in 2019/20), and the standard cost of dementia nursing care (£662.53 per week in 2019/20), should the programme succeed to delay the transfer of some individuals to care for, say, only six weeks each – then the programme would pay for itself based on approximately 25 such cases across Gwynedd every year.”
By Gareth Williams – Local Democracy Reporter
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