Ask your DFO – Dementia Friends Champions

Ask your RSOEach month, one of our DFOs (Dementia Friends Officers) answer one of your Dementia Friends Champions questions. Charlotte Adams, DFO for the North West, answers this month’s question:

Why is it important to signpost during my Information Sessions?

Take into account that everyone will have different reasons for attending but it is important to remember that people have signed up to attend an Information Session and become Dementia Friends. If someone asks a question, this will be more than likely not be relevant to everyone in the room so signposting can be a great way to ensure people are acknowledged and know they will find out where they can get further information. Answering one question can also lead to lots of further questions which will make it difficult to get through your Session on time!

As a Dementia Friends Champion, you have highlighted to your group in the introduction that you are not there as an expert or a counsellor. This is a point you can refer back to in the Session as providing information or advice does beyond what you are trained to deliver. There is also the risk of providing incorrect information to people. We also need to remember that dementia can affect everyone differently so one person’s experience may not the same for everyone.

It is important to consider about what happens if you answer somebody’s question; what happens in two weeks when they have another question? At the end of the Session, the person is more likely to feel motivated to access further information. You’ve done a fantastic thing by providing them with an action card and potentially having signposting materials available so they know what support is out there.

Dementia Friends may feel inspired to become Champions themselves so by signposting people to further information, you can show your group that you don’t have to be an expert to take part.

2 thoughts on “Ask your DFO – Dementia Friends Champions

  1. Tim Ward

    Hi,
    I’ve been running some sessions for members of my team at North West Ambulance Service. The subject of design of ambulances and in turn also of homes etc. came up. Particularly in regard to about how people with dementia react to different lighting or colours. I had a look at some research on Stirling University’s website (I know, it’s rather sad!). Here’s the link – http://dementia.stir.ac.uk/design/good-practice-design-dementia-and-sight-loss – the question has come up several times especially when talking about the doormat which may appear as a hole. Could the society put something in about this?

    1. Dementia Friends Post author

      Hi Tim – thanks very much for your message. Great to hear about the Sessions you have been running.

      Regarding lighting and colours, one thing which might be of interest is the Dementia Action Alliances environmental checklist: http://www.dementiaaction.org.uk/assets/0000/4336/dementia_friendly_environments_checklist.pdf

      And I will pass your feedback on to the team so that it can be taken into consideration for the next round of updates that are made to the Info Session resources.

      Best wishes,

      Lucien, Dementia Friends Team

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>