Dementia Friends Champions: Ask your DFO

Ask your RSOEach month, one of our DFOs (Dementia Friends Officers) answer your Dementia Friends Champions questions. Hannah Piekarski, DFO for London and the South, answers this month’s question:

Dear DFO

I know that the end of March 2015 marked the end of government funding for Dementia Friends. It’s great news that Alzheimer’s Society has decided to continue the programme, but what does this mean for me as a Champion? Will I have to deliver my Session any differently?

Anonymous Champion

Dear Champion

I’d first like to thank you for helping us reach our first big Dementia Friends milestone of creating one million Dementia Friends – this success would simply not have been possible without you!

As you know, Dementia Friends was first funded by the Cabinet Office and Department of Health for England until the end of March 2015.  But don’t worry because Dementia Friends won’t stop there!  We have already started the next phase of our programme and I wanted to tell you a little more about this.

Our new goal

Now that we’ve hit our first milestone, Alzheimer’s Society has committed to reaching a further 3 million Dementia Friends over the next 5 years – creating a new target of 4 million Dementia Friends by 2020! We would love for you to continue to help us with this by running Information Sessions so that one day, everyone will be a Dementia Friend.

Our funding

As our government funding finished at the end of March 2015, Dementia Friends is now funded by voluntary donations made to the Alzheimer’s Society.

What this means for you

The changes described above should not mean any major changes to your volunteer role. Please continue running Information Sessions just as you have been and making Dementia Friends, just like before.

However, there are a few things that we would like you to be aware of:

Information Session content: During the ‘What is Dementia Friends?’ part of the Information Session, you will no longer need to explain that the programme is funded by the Cabinet Office and Department of Health for England.

Resources: We will be updating all of our resources in due course. Please continue to use the infocards, action mailers, Dementia Friends badges and the resources on the website, just as before. Don’t worry that some of your resources may still refer to government funding.

Website: We will be updating the website over the coming month, so the front page will look a little different from mid-April. 

Donations: Please continue not accepting any donations in return for running a Dementia Friends Information Session. However, if people would like to donate money to Dementia Friends, please direct them to the Alzheimer’s Society.

It is fantastic to have you on board as we embark on the next exciting phase of the Dementia Friends initiative.  Please do let do not hesitate to your DFO if you have any questions or concerns about the changes above or anything else.

2 thoughts on “Dementia Friends Champions: Ask your DFO

  1. Jackie

    You don’t make it easy for Champions to log on to book their session. I have worked for 15 plus years with people. Logging on to your website is a lot harder than spending some 4 hours with a person with Dementia. They have a lot more knowledge than computers, I struggle getting on to your Champions website.

    1. Dementia Friends Post author

      Hi Jackie – many thanks for your message.

      Sorry to hear you are experiencing problems when using our website. Please do send us details of the problems and we will do our best to help you. You can email dementiafriends@alzheimers.org.uk or get in contact with your Regional Support Officer Rebecca Hill.

      Many thanks for your support and all you are doing as a Dementia Friends Champion.

      Best wishes.

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