30 May 2019

Sunderland businesses are being invited to take part in free sessions to help increase their understanding of people dealing with dementia.

Dementia Friends is an initiative set up nationwide by the Alzheimer’s Society, to change attitudes about the condition and those who are living with it.

And now Sunderland’s own Dementia Friends Champion is holding free one hour sessions so that people from all walks of life can learn about dementia, its effects and how businesses can become more dementia friendly.

Michael Robinson from the city’s Emmerson Solicitor is a Dementia Friends Champion and is running a session for businesses and anyone working in the public sector to find out more.

“Anyone who thinks people with dementia cannot live well should think again,” said Mr Robinson.

“Dementia Friends is all about people living with dementia living well and if the information sessions will highlight how.

“More than that, business owners and service providers have a social responsibility to help build a dementia friendly business community and Dementia Friends can help businesses do that.

“This is vital given people are living longer and more and more people are living with dementia.”

The next session is being held at the offices of Emmerson Solicitors at 52 John Street, Sunderland at 8.30am on 14 June. Anyone who would like to attend should contact [email protected]

At the same time Mr Robinson is willing to give talks to specific groups of people and also has a range of materials available aimed at younger people.

Sharon Appleby, Head of Business Operations at Sunderland BID is urging businesses to support the initiative.

“There are so many people directly or indirectly affected by dementia that it’s really important to understand the challenges and for businesses to become dementia friendly,” she said.

“These sessions will do just that and we hope that they are well supported.”