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MP and Councillor help officially open dementia lunch club


Michael Shanks and Robert Brown on hand to cut cake at Clydeford View Wednesday Lunch Club

Michael Shanks MP and Cllr Robert Brown were on hand to help officially open the Wednesday Lunch Club on 29 May and see what goes on to help support people living with dementia and their carers.


The pilot club, which has been open since late March, meets twice monthly and has been full to capacity since it opened.


Helen Jilks, LEAP’s dementia services development officer, said: “Even though we’ve been open for a while we wanted to celebrate the club with the people who attend.


“We are really grateful to Michael and Robert for coming along to help us do that.”


Michael Shanks said: “I was delighted to be at the club to help celebrate its opening.


“It’s a marvellous idea and badly needed in the area. The people living with dementia enjoyed playing dominoes, doing quizzes and painting but, equally important, their carers got an hour to themselves in a separate area.


“I joined them, and it was pretty clear they all thought the club - in particular their hour - was a lifesaver for them. It meant so much for them to be able to chat to their peers, talk about issues and do that knowing their loved ones were being looked after next door.


“I’ve asked LEAP to officially record what is happening and what is being said so that it can be flagged up to the likes of the health and social care partnership and Scottish Government.


Robert Brown added: “It was great to see the enthusiasm and mutual support from club members. Carers really valued the opportunity for a break and a chance to exchange ideas. So many people really feel they are alone in the intense commitment of looking after a loved one with dementia.

“This club - and hopefully many more like it - are vital to the wellbeing of people living with dementia.

“There are huge numbers of people in the community with caring responsibilities and it was very clear that there is a great need for good information and support on financial, care and household support.”

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