A Vision for Dementia at Touchstone by Alison Lowe

Touchstone is proud of the contribution we make to the city-wide Leeds Dementia Strategy.

There are an estimated 8,500 people living with dementia in Leeds, of whom just over 6,400 have a diagnosis.  Since 2013, the number of people with a dementia diagnosis in the city has increased by 40%.

Touchstone, along with other charities, local people and communities has risen to the challenge to make Leeds a dementia-friendly place and we join over 150 other organisations who are signed up to the Dementia Action alliance.  Nearly 29,000 Leeds residents, including some Touchstone staff, have registered as Dementia Friends.

Leeds has 47 Memory Cafes, with our own Hamari Yadaain is one of these which supports people with dementia – and their carers – from South East Asian communities across the city.

The older population of Leeds is expected to increase, and become more diverse, as people approach later life who were either born in the UK in the years from 1946; or who came to the UK post-war particularly from Caribbean and South Asian countries.  The challenge for Leeds – and us here at Touchstone – is to keep pace with emerging population needs, including those of BAME communities.

The Council is preparing to refresh its dementia strategy and Touchstone are active partners in this review.  Our vision is that Touchstone’s Dementia service will form a strong and influential part of the Leeds strategy; informing its direction and reach to enable our BAME communities to “Live Well With Dementia”.

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