Ryedale dementia ambassador Kim increases awareness of her dementia-friendly campaign

Gazette & Herald: DEMENTIA WORK: Kim Pennock, right, The Hall care manager Diane Hagan, left, and activities co-ordinator Helen Coulson with the Purple Angel logo for dementia-friendly businesses        Picture: Frank Dwyer DEMENTIA WORK: Kim Pennock, right, The Hall care manager Diane Hagan, left, and activities co-ordinator Helen Coulson with the Purple Angel logo for dementia-friendly businesses Picture: Frank Dwyer

A woman is forging ahead with her campaign to raise awareness of dementia care.

Kim Pennock, who lives in Thornton-le-Dale, became a‘Purple Angel Ambassador to encourage businesses to be dementia friendly.

Businesses that have already signed up include Beck Isle Museum, the workingmen’s club, and Reeds newsagents, all in Pickering. They all display a Purple Angel sign indicating that they know how to greet and accommodate people with dementia.

Kim said a number of other businesses were currently training their staff prior to adopting the logo.

“What I would love to be able to do is get our dementia awareness logo on buses, trains and in as many businesses as possible,” she said.

“I am planning to hold a fundraising concert this year and have already been offered a venue and several artists.

“I would also very much like to organise a food-related event for all those who require more information about the difficulties of keeping meals simple, but nutritious, for people with Alzheimer’s.”

Kim said she would particularly love for Thornton-le-Dale to be the first village that was entirely dementia-friendly and had been working closely with The Hall residential home.

“The Hall, in Thornton, will be opening a community day care centre early next month, which will fill a much-needed gap in care facilities available to people daily,” said Kim.

“I am looking forward very much to working with The Hall on activities and creating awareness.”

Kim said that following the G8 summit on dementia in London last month, during which leading nations committed to developing a cure or treatment for dementia by 2025, she was pleased dementia was finally at the frontline discussion stage, but was disappointed by the plans the UK Government had.

The UK said it aims to double its annual research funding to £132m by 2025.

“The funding for research, while being vital to finding a cure, does not solve the huge problems faced by all diagnosed and the many families friends and carers affected,” she said.

“The time to act is now, so David Cameron said, however, a great army of people have already been acting over many years to try tokill the dreadful stigma attached to dementia and that is exactly what I and many other people fully intend to do.”

If anyone would like to help with funding, would like to be dementia aware, support an event or offer help with the events Kim is planning, email sea2shore@hotmail.co.uk The global number of dementia sufferers is expected to treble to 135 million by 2050.

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