I use this blog to express my point of view and passionate interest in older people and how we connect with them, especially if they live with dementia.
For thirty-five years, I was a creative producer in brand and marketing communications, working with many household names. My mother's ten-year experience of dementia and a long-term, and a deep interest in older people lead me in a new direction.
I am a team member of My Home Life, an Expert by Experience with the Care Quality Commission, an associate of SCIE (Social Care Institute for Excellence) and a ExE dementia trainer for AgeUK. I serve on NCVO Volunteering in Care Homes Advisory board and am a volunteer and trustee of Contact the Elderly
I created Many Happy Returns Chatterbox cards, published in 2008. A set of 26, 1940s memory trigger cards help young and old have more meaningful and enjoyable conversations, using people's "reminiscence bump" as the driver. The 1950s set was launched in September 2010 and I am currently writing the 1960s' set. The cards can now be found in over 9,500 care homes, community and day centres, hospitals and family homes around the country.
In 2009 at the request of a care home, I developed REAL Communication workshops and now deliver these all over the country for care workers, nursing staff and students. (Gold Award, The Learning Awards 2014 with Norfolk & Suffolk Dementia Alliance)