Why do we need support groups?

Dementia is very common and the current estimation is more than 6000 people in Bradford are suffering from this condition. However dementia does not only affect the individual, it also has a significant impact on the carer (often the spouse) who has to deal with increasing difficulties in care and support and often with greater isolation from friends and the community.

Surveys have suggested that nearly a third of people are apprehensive about talking about dementia, 18% fear meeting a person with dementia, and even those who have a friend or relative with dementia are unsure about how to support them. Experience shows that to overcome fears, loss of confidence and social isolation, people need to come together to talk and share.

Some comments from carers:

  • “I greatly value that we are able to have some time apart. I feel that we both gain more confidence at the sessions. It enables me to speak about problems and I enjoy the discussions.”
  • “My mum really enjoys her Friday afternoon sessions.”
  • “If the club was closed this would leave a gap in our support.”
  • “The sessions are valued as they help my husband to express himself when I am not there. I particularly value the support of the staff and the other carers, and the information we receive.”
  • “Dementia is a terrible illness and we need someone to help and turn to.”
  • “My husband enjoys coming here as well, as he likes to talk to the other men with memory difficulties.”
  • “If the club was closed I would miss the support and friendship.”
  • “I particularly value the pleasure of being with people who know and understand the problems.”
  • “In the carers group we have time together to laugh or to cry with others who really understand what it is like.”
  • “This is the only place my husband will let me bring him.”