Caroline Tait, Nursing Assistant and Dementia Champion at The Edinburgh Clinic is taking the lead and planning a coffee morning with a difference in support of Alzheimer Scotland, a cause extremely close to her heart.
“My Grandad sadly passed away 4 years ago, age 96. He lived independently until aged 92 before developing dementia and had to be cared for in a nursing home. He struggled to keep his independence until the end. It was very sad to see him deteriorate and have so much confusion about himself and the people around him.”
Caroline’s grandad served as a Chindit in Burma on the frontline in World War Two and her family remember him fondly as a clever and proud man with a vast array of experiences from his time serving in the war.
He also enjoyed writing poetry about his experiences, “I still have some of his original poems written in his 80's. It was awful to experience first-hand how he became at the towards the end of his life but I try to remember all the good family times and laughter we shared together. He will always be remembered in my heart.”
Caroline has been passionate about supporting Alzheimer Scotland through various local events and campaigning, using the opportunity to involve her employer whenever possible through her appointed role as Dementia Champion.
Caroline shared, “I saw this as an exciting and positive role as I was very interested in learning more about dementia and how to support those living with it. I also really enjoy being creative and organising fundraising events. I organised our first Dementia Friends session with Alzheimer Scotland in 2019. The Training Advisor made the interactive session very informal which helped staff to feel welcome and relaxed. During that session I personally witnessed compassionate tears and emotions from colleagues as they listened to the many stories and people that Alzheimer Scotland support.”
The Edinburgh Clinic’s Tea & Blether is sure to be a success with plans to include an awareness training session and a raffle with gift vouchers and prizes kindly donated by local Edinburgh businesses, alongside plenty cups of tea and cake!
“I feel having a fundraising event around Dementia Awareness Week is the ideal time as by learning just a little bit more about dementia, people can make a big difference as it is vital that those living with Dementia feel recognised, valued and supported in their local communities.”
You can host a Tea & Blether coffee morning in your workplace or gather friends and family at home to raise funds and awareness of dementia. And it’s simple: Just pick a date between Monday 30 May to Friday 5th June or a date of your choice.
Whilst fundraising is an important part of the campaign, we also want to spark a conversation with a focus on raising awareness as we continue to reduce stigma around dementia and educate ourselves on the positive impact that social interaction has on our wellbeing and brain.
Whenever you decide to host your Tea & Blether and wherever it takes place, getting together to chat is great for everyone. To register for free and receive your fundraising pack visit blether.alzscot.org.