Newport County AFC and Newport Gwent Dragons have shown their support for people affected by dementia and become Dementia Friends.
Last week, staff, volunteers and fans from Newport County AFC joined staff from Newport Gwent Dragons at Newport Centre to take part in the Alzheimer's Society's Dementia Friends programme. Members of the NCAFC Disabled Supporters Association - who are commited to improving the matchday experience for fans with disabilities - also attended.
The Dementia Friends programme is the biggest ever initiative to change people’s perceptions of dementia. It aims to transform the way the nation thinks, talks and acts about the condition. It was launched to tackle the stigma and lack of understanding that means many people with the condition experience loneliness and social exclusion. The Newport County staff and volunteers who attended the programme join nearly 70,000 other Dementia Friends across Wales.
With dementia cases on the rise - Alzheimer’s Society research shows that By 2021, one million people will be living with the condition - it's more important than ever than awareness of the condition is raised.
Chair of the Newport County Disabled Supporters Association, Colin Faulkner, said: “Both the club and the DSA are proud to support Alzheimer's Society and become Dementia Friends. With around 2,000 people in Newport living with dementia, it’s more important than ever for there to be effective support within the community.”
Sue Phelps, Director of Alzheimer’s Society Cymru added: “It’s great to see staff from the different clubs in Newport and their fans uniting against dementia. Dementia doesn’t care who you are; it could affect us all. Someone develops the condition every three minutes, and there’s currently no cure. People with dementia often feel – and are – misunderstood, marginalised and isolated. And that means that they’re less likely to be able to live independently in their own communities.”
“A Dementia Friend learns a little bit more about what it's like to live with dementia and then turns that understanding into action - anyone of any age can be a Dementia Friend.”
If you would like to become a Dementia Friend or for more information visit www.dementiafriends.org.uk