Dementia Action Week 2018

Dementia Action Week 2018

by Gemma Angell & Anne Jones

Alzheimer’s Society in Sussex is calling for everyone to unite and take action to make a difference this Dementia Action Week (21- 27 May). No action is too big or small and, in Sussex, there are a whole host of activities taking place throughout the week.

From becoming a Dementia Friend to spreading the word of dementia, Sussex residents can find out more about dementia and take action. Alan Rumary from Alzheimer’s Society’s Horsham Rusty Brains – a group of people living well with dementia, explained why it is important to take action this Dementia Action Week. He explains, “raising awareness of dementia and being able to take action is really important. It is action we need. It is help, and support.

Turning awareness into action will make a difference to people living with dementia and, hopefully, make it better. People can come together and make a positive impact in our communities. Everyone with dementia is different and everyone has different experiences. Taking the time for people to understand that can make all the difference.”

There will be two Living Well days in Crawley and Worthing, where people can try out different sports. Margaret Wilkins’ husband, Bill, has dementia and the couple regularly attend the Crawley event. “Bill and I really enjoy going to the activity day, it’s great to try new sports and get Bill involved in things like bowls, which he loves. Alzheimer’s Society does so much for us and it’s great to be able to support them at these events.”

Linda O’Sullivan, Alzheimer’s Society Head of Region for London and the South East, stated that, “in the UK, one person develops dementia every three minutes and almost everyone knows someone whose life has been affected. Yet too many people face the condition alone without adequate support. We’d love to see Sussex residents during Dementia Action Week take action for people affected by dementia.” To find out more about Alzheimer’s Society services or events happening during Dementia Action Week, call the Sussex Helpline on 01403 213017.

There are more than 27,400 people living with dementia in Sussex and too many face the condition alone without adequate support. Here are top four ways you can get involved in 2018:


Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Friends initiative allows people to learn a little bit more about what it’s like to live with dementia and then turn that understanding into action. In Sussex there are already more than 51,073 Dementia Friends. To find your nearest session, visit


This year’s Dementia Action Week theme is community change and we want to see a big impact in Sussex. People with dementia and carers have shared actions with us that will make a difference – helping them to feel included in their communities and able to live the lives they want.

For free awareness or fundraising materials, visit


In the UK, one person develops dementia every three minutes and almost everyone knows someone whose life has been affected. There hasn’t been a new drug for dementia in 15 years. But since 2013, the number of clinical trials for Alzheimer’s drugs has doubled. Alzheimer’s Society will continue to drive forward research for effective treatments for dementia and – ultimately – a cure. Unite against dementia and sign up to take part in research, visit


Whether you are planning your own fundraising event, attending a Dementia Friends Information Session or have a unique action to help make a difference, Alzheimer’s Society wants to hear about it. Share what you are planning on social media by using #DAW2018. You can ‘like’ or ‘follow’ your local Alzheimer’s Society pages: Facebook: Alzheimer’s Society – South East England, Twitter: @AlzSocSEEngland


Burgess Hill Events

  • During Dementia Action Week, which runs from 21 – 27 May, Burgess Hill Dementia Friendly Town Committee is co-ordinating a range of free events to raise awareness of dementia and the support available locally, and we are delighted to announce that Judy Parfitt is opening our Burgess Hill Action Week Dementia Conference on 24th May.
  • Wednesday 23 May – St Augustinian Care Home on Ditchling Common is holding a coffee morning and showing the film Alive Inside. For those who require transport, minibuses will pick up outside SpecSavers in Church Road at 9.45am, 10.15am and 10.45am. Thursday 24 May – Open Morning with dementia support and advice services and a presentation from The Virtual Dementia Tour, at Martlets Hall, from 10am – 2pm.
  • Friday 25 May – Talented musician Mrs Rosalie Birchmore will play Memorable Music at the Salvation Army Hall in Cyprus Road, at 10.30am. Refreshments provided. Burgess Hill Radio will hold dementia advice sessions, memorabilia displays and music during the week. Just drop in. These events are sponsored by P&S Gallagher, West Sussex County Council, Burgess Hill Town Council and Burgess Hill District Lions. For further information, please contact 01444 245293.

Further Events in Sussex

  • Live Well Worthing Day – Wednesday 16 May, 12 to 4pm at Worthing Leisure Centre. Free taster sessions for people over the age of 50 include yoga, Pilates, walking football and table tennis, plus free health checks including an opportunity to meet representatives from NHS audiology.
  • Garden Party and Cream Tea – Sunday 20 May, 2 to 4pm, at Warnham Park, near Horsham. There will be live music from Tideway Folk Group, a museum tour, bake off and lawn games. Dementia Awareness Drop-in – Monday 21 May, 10.30am to 1pm, at Horsham Library. Find out more about dementia and the support available  locally. Some of Alzheimer’s Society’s Sussex Helpline volunteers will be on hand to answer your questions.
  • Horsham Carers Support Event – Tuesday 22 May, 2.30 to 4.30pm, at Strawberry Fields Tea Room, New House Farm, RH12 4RU. Enjoy a cream team and a live musical interlude with Tommy Parsons.
  • Vintage Stagecoach 1960’s open top bus in Worthing – Tuesday 22 May. The bus, organised by Worthing Dementia Action Alliance members, will be in Worthing throughout the day, with information stands in South Street Square.
  • Dementia Awareness Drop-in – Tuesday 22 May, 10.30am to 1pm, at Hurstpierpoint Library. Learn more about dementia and the support available locally. Some of Alzheimer’s Society’s Sussex Helpline volunteers will be on hand to answer your questions.
  • Active Crawley Day – Thursday 24 May, 12.30 to 4.30pm, at K2 Leisure Centre, Crawley. A chance to give different activities a go for free, for people over the age of 50. These include: swimming, indoor bowls, dancing, table tennis, Pilates, health checks and entertainment.