National Museums Liverpool’s pioneering House of Memories training programme is to work with four leading housing associations to increase awareness and understanding of dementia.
The House of Memories has partnered with Liverpool Mutual Homes (LMH), Knowsley Housing Trust (KHT), the Regenda Group and Riverside, to empower their workforce, tenants, neighbourhoods and local communities to gain awareness of dementia and develop a deeper understanding of people living with dementia.
The programme, which has been working successfully with the health and social care sector for more than a year, provides participants with practical skills and resources to support those living with dementia, to live well.
This latest development for the project will see staff from housing associations attend training sessions geared specifically to situations and scenarios that can occur in their daily work concerning people living with dementia.
National Museums Liverpool recognises that museums are expert at recording and caring for people’s memories – whether they are thousands of years old or within ‘living memory’. Museums enable people to explore and connect with their personal history and engage in relevant and meaningful cultural activity. To acknowledge and understand an individual’s personal history and memory is of great value and significance, and this is the root of the House of Memories training.
Carol Rogers, Executive Director of Education and Communities at National Museums Liverpool said: “The aim of the House of Memories programme is to inform and help people understand dementia and its effect on people’s lives and wellbeing. In providing this training, we hope to help people help others who are living with dementia, making their lives easier, happier and more integrated into their communities.
“Working with housing associations and providers is so important, because older people make up a substantial proportion of the tenant population living in social housing. It is a fact that one in three people over 65 will have dementia by the time they reach the end of their life, so we all have to work harder at every level to make sure they feel secure in their living situations.”
More than 86,000 people in the North West region are currently diagnosed with dementia. 800,000 people in the UK are now living with dementia and an estimated 21 million people know someone with dementia – that’s 42% of the population.
This new House of Memories programme has been developed in consultation with the housing association partners’ requirements, and geared specifically to the challenges facing the housing workforce, tenants, families and carers to support those living with dementia.
Working with AFTA Thought training consultants, the House of Memories programme is practical and interactive, using drama to present factual information about dementia to help participants understand the experience of living with dementia.
Stephanie Harrison, Executive Director of the Regenda Group said: “We have a range of residents, some with very complex needs, who require a little more support than others. Their wellbeing is of great importance and it’s vital that we provide the extra support needed to help people manage in their own home.
“Working with the House of Memories project is of great value to us in developing our skills and awareness to help those residents who live with dementia, and reassure them that they have a support network and community around them that can help.”