Our Carers Workshops are designed for unpaid carers, supporting a person living with dementia in Bromley, Lewisham, Greenwich, Lambeth and Southwark.
These courses offer the opportunity to understand dementia from the point of view of the person experiencing it. The course can help you find out more about dementia, cope with caring responsibilities, and prepare for the future.
“As a former local government officer and a chartered engineer, I have been on dozens of courses covering dozens of topics. This has been the best course I have ever been on. Professionally delivered with lots of opportunities to discuss specific issues. I have left the course much better equipped to care for my wife. Thank you so much.”
Where are the workshops held?
Bromley and Greenwich, and available for purchase in other boroughs.
How are they delivered?
Via three x three hour long workshops delivered over three weeks, in person, with a choice of morning or evening.
How much do they cost?
The workshops are free in Bromley and Greenwich. For other organisations cost on application.
The aim of the workships is to deliver an understanding of how dementia affects the person living with it; and, through positive communication, understand and develop strategies to manage behaviours that cause distress. The workshops also offer an opportunity to develop peer support (when people use their own experiences to help each other).
Workshop one: Understanding the Impact of Dementia on the Person
- Define dementia and provided an opportunity to recognise the different causes of dementia.
- Provide an opportunity to recognise the person first and the importance of life history.
- Provide an opportunity to discuss stereotyping and the effect on the person, talk about person-centred care and the work of dementia pioneer Tom Kitwood.
- Provide opportunity to experience what it might be like to have a dementia.
- Provide an opportunity to understand how the memory works to enable participants to understand the reality of a person living with a dementia and to begin to develop more positive communication skills.
- Ensure participants are aware of service provision and benefits available to them.
- With the help of a carers advisor, ensure they are sign-posted to the correct support service and are able to access any benefits and support they need.
- Provide an opportunity to develop relationships, which will enable peer support.
Workshop two: The Experience of Dementia and understanding distress
- Provide an opportunity to discuss signs and symptoms of dementia, and dispel myths.
- Provide an opportunity to look at the effects of dementia on the brain and behaviour and how this can affect an individual’s ability to communicate.
- Discuss the impact of dementia on a person’s ability to use logic and reason.
- Provide an opportunity to review our own basic needs and the impact losing these has on us as a person.
- Provide an opportunity to discuss how understanding our own needs can help us to recognise the reasons or meaning and emotions behind certain behaviours and words people living with dementia may use.
- Provide an opportunity to discuss how different approaches and responses to what a person with dementia says can affect positive wellbeing.
- Provide an opportunity to think about how small changes to the environment can increase support and independence of a person living with a dementia.
- Begin to recognise that all behaviour is communication and how feelings matter when communicating with a person living with dementia.
Workshop three: Positive Communication Approaches
- Provide an opportunity to discuss new strategies participants have used with their relative and the impact that they have had on their behaviour and wellbeing.
- Provide an opportunity to experience communication difficulties and the impact it can have.
- Provide an opportunity to experience how communicating using validation as opposed to logic can support effective communication skills.
- Provide an opportunity to understand that what a person says is not always what they mean.
- Provide further resources to enable participants to continue to develop their knowledge.
- Provide an opportunity to ensure on going peer support can be facilitated.
- Participants are made aware of how and where to access support.
- Uptake in financial support.
- Increased peer support leading to a reduction in any feelings of isolation.
- Participants have increased understanding of the impact of dementia on the person they care for, giving them the ability to be more empathetic.
- Participants have knowledge of the small changes that can be made to support the person in their own environment.
- Participants have a better understanding of what their relative or friend may be communicating through their words, and how appropriate responses can enhance wellbeing.
- Participants have an increased understanding of how it feels to live with dementia, enhancing their ability to empathise with the person living with dementia.
- Participants have a better understanding of the needs of their relative living with dementia.
- Enhanced support and improved wellbeing for the person living with dementia.
- Reduction in carer-related stress through improved understanding and communication.
Updated August 2023
“The course has made me feel I can deal with difficult situations and I’m not alone.”