Monday, 10 July 2017

Dementia Carer Voices is going to the Scottish Parliament to celebrate the over 14,000

This week Dementia Carer Voices is going to the Scottish Parliament to celebrate the over 14,000 we have received over the years on our ‘You Can Make a Difference’ campaign and have conversations about the key messages within our new publication with MSPs.
As part of the campaign we have previously spent a few days at the Scottish Parliament, where many MSPs made their own personal pledges.
We are going from Tuesday to Thursday this week and will be presenting at a stand in Parliament to promote our project and engage with parliamentarians about the work that we do. On Wednesday MSPs will debate Dementia Carer Voices’ work and discuss the findings of the publication we have delivered.
You can watch the debate via this link on the day at 5pm ON WEDNESDAY jUNE 28TH 
WMTY Team photo
In addition to our stand, we will be hosting a lunch on Thursday, which be a chance to discuss our latest publication and have conversation with people who have made the pledges who will be coming along to the event.
See here for our updated case studies of our tour to universities, colleges, hospitals and care homes.
Press Release
Parliamentary Exhibition and Event 27th – 29th June 2017: Press Release
Dementia Carer Voices are bringing the voice of 14,000 health and social care staff and students to Parliament for a two-day exhibition and event. Thanks to sponsorship from Jackie Baillie MSP, Dementia Carer Voices (DCV) have been given the opportunity to exhibit information at the Scottish Parliament on 27th – 29th June. There will also be an event in Parliament on Thursday 29th June to discuss the content of the latest DCV report which assesses the impact the ‘You Can Make a Difference’ campaign has had since it launched three years ago.
The ‘You Can Make a Difference’ campaign has involved an extensive outreach programme of over 600 talks delivered to health and social care professionals and students throughout the country, to engage with individuals at every stage of their career. This has resulted in over 14,000 pledges being made by practitioners and students to improve experiences for caring for individuals. These pledges are often small changes, but can make a crucial difference for people who are at their most vulnerable. Some pledges that have been gathered include:
  • “I pledge to make a difference as the future nurse to listen to the carers and patient. To give them the best support and care they needed and not to make them ever feel isolated.”  (Student nurse)
  • “I pledge that I will see the person with dementia as an individual who has lived their life from childhood, to falling in love, to having a family and growing old, to understand their story and how they would like to be cared for.” (Nurse)
The campaign has showcased the impact of personal stories; the recognition that all of us are individuals and not simply ‘patients’ or ‘staff members’, and that each of us has the ability to make things better for other people, both in our personal and professional lives. The DCV exhibition will showcase the ‘You Can Make a Difference’ campaign and crucially the pledges that have been gathered to date, along with the journey that the people who have made them have been on.
Irene Oldfather, Director the ALLIANCE  said: “Dementia Carer Voices is delighted to return to Parliament to share the learnings of our inspiring campaign to make a difference to the lives of people with dementia, their carers and families. Discussing and debating the carer experience is to be welcomed as a way of increasing awareness of dementia and the carer journey.
Carers of people with dementia describe the journey as an emotional roller coaster which is both rewarding and incredibly sad as you lose a little of the person each day. The ALLIANCE welcomes this debate and the commitment of MSPs across the chamber to promoting the carer experience.”
  • “My pledge is to “leave no stone unturned and no door unknocked” in pursuit of a Better Tomorrow for people with dementia and their carers”
Tommy Whitelaw, Project Engagement Lead for Dementia Carer Voices said: “I would like to thank MSPs for their on-going interest and taking this opportunity to listen to the thoughts, feelings and experiences of carers. It is imperative that we raise awareness of the impact of dementia on families, and the vital role played by carers, so that nobody else in Scotland has to go through the caring journey experiencing the loneliness and isolation that we did.”
Ends
Further information
More information on the project can be found at www.alliance-scotland.org.uk/what-we-do/projects/dementia-carer-voices/ or alternatively at www.dementiacarervoices.wordpress.com/where the full list of pledges can be accessed.
For any questions related to the exhibition, the event or the report, please contact Irene Oldfather, The ALLIANCE Director irene.oldfather@alliance-scotland.org.uk 07713 329752 or Tommy Whitelaw, UK Engagement Lead, The ALLIANCE, tommy.whitelaw@alliance-scotland.org.uk  07921 395712.


Thanks for reading my blog, You can now view my 8 short flims here! http://tommy-on-tour-2011.blogspot.co.uk/2014/05/my-mums-name-was-joan-this-is-our-story.html
DCV photo DementiaCarerRGBlandscape3_zpsa2f3d5ff.jpg

My mums name was Joan ,my Mum Had Dementia - our Story 9 Short Films

Tommy’s speech, providing a carer’s perspective,  on the theme of “No – one ever asked >” highlighted the transformational impact that listening, kindness and understanding made to his journey as a carer, and the importance of looking beyond a person’s diagnosis to engage with them as an individual.

If you would like to access further information about the Collaborative and to view presentations from the latest learning session, please click here.


In 2011 Tommy produced a short film in conjunction with Alzheimer Scotland. The video, which was later shown at the Scottish Parliament, includes families and carers reading from the letters they sent him during his dementia awareness tour of Scotland’s towns and cities. To view the FILM http://tv.enterprisescreen.co.uk/watch?v=347



 Putting the Care into Dementia Care

This training film is a collaboration between Health watch Essex, staff at Broomfield Hospital and Dementia Carer Voices







Interview for NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde

 Patients’ Stories Library

The NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde's Patients' Stories Library for Hospital Staff aims to use patients’ and carers’ experiences to look at how acute services can be improved.
Tommy shared his story with frontline staff working across NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, including the Ward staff that cared for his mother at the Southern General hospital. His film interview was also shown across a number of NHSGGC hospital sites during Carers Week 2013 to help raise awareness amongst staff about the importance of supporting carers in contributing to delivering person centred care. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=36_Y_3y0yXM

Dementia Carer Voices where proud to tour with Healthwatch across Essex back in October 2015.  You can view the blog post and pledges from the few days here. 
Thanks to every one of you who attended each event and the @HWEssex team for arranging the few days.  Below is a new film about the tour with some of the Nurses who attended sharing their pledges made to the Make a Difference Campaign each day. 
HWlarge




 It’s Ok to Ask for Help!

The It’s Ok to Ask DVD produced by NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde, Glasgow City Council, The Alliance and Alzheimer Scotland uses carers’ experiences to highlight the benefits of using carer support services in Glasgow, and encourages people to ask for help. Tommy Whitelaw, Alliance Scotland, shares experiences of looking after a partner, parent, relative, friend or neighbour with dementia. Other carers tell us about help they get from support services in Glasgow. FILM http://youtu.be/u2BAxSCcic0




'On the Couch' with Tommy Whitelaw filmed interview NHS Scotland Conference June 2015





Speaking Care Inspectorate Seminar 

Published on 7 Nov 2013
Tommy recently spoke to our inspection team to talk about his experiences of caring for his mum Joan Whitelaw, who died last year after living with dementia for several years. He spoke about the difficulties he had getting the right services for his mum at the right time and how this led him to take his dementia awareness campaign "On Tour"




















National Dementia Awareness Week 2014 (England) – NHS Employers Nursing Times - my Filmed interview

To mark National Dementia Awareness Week which runs from 18 to 24 May, NHS Employers the Nursing Times are working with the Alzheimer’s Society to promote resources available to NHS organisations and the NHS workforce.
As part of this activity, they have specially commissioned a short video of an interview with Dementia Carer Voices’ very own Tommy Whitelaw.

You can get more information here on NHS Employers 
This video was made to mark this year’s Dementia Awareness week 





You can click on the image Below to preview the  trailer for a longer film which will be launched on 12th December in NHS Ayrshire and Arran University Hospital Ayr lecture theatre.
make a difference film

Full version of Make a difference with the staff nhsaaa 
Nicola Film Still 2



Tuesday, 4 July 2017

My Name is Tommy,I cared for my wonderful mum Joan

My name is Tommy Whitelaw, and for five years I was a full-time carer for my mum Joan, up until she sadly passed away in September 2012.
At the time my Mum was diagnosed with vascular dementia, I looked at her and thought to myself “it’ll be okay, we’ll get through this.” What I soon learned as her carer, was that dementia was an unpredictable illness which brought many challenges and forced us to adapt to ever-changing routines. Many days we would wake up to discover that everything we had grown accustomed to have suddenly changed again.I wondered whether the struggles I faced were mine and mine alone, and how other carers who had been through the same journey as I was embarking on, had managed to cope. This was the basis behind my first venture in to the world of awareness raising – the‘Tommy On Tour’ campaign, which involved collecting life story letters from people across Scotland caring for a loved one with dementia.
The hundreds of letters I received let me know that the challenges I faced were far from unique to my own situation and I have to say meeting and speaking to others in the same situation was one of the most beneficial things I could have done.
An issue that struck me during my journey caring for my mum was the lack of awareness and understanding of dementia and the way in which we perceive this illness as a wider society.  My door was always open but no one walked through it, people didn’t come to visit us anymore and I truly believe that was down to the stigma surrounding the illness.
Everyone affected by dementia has a unique story to tell and by sharing our experiences we can help to tackle the misunderstandings surrounding dementia and offer hope to people in the same situation.
This is something I am passionate about promoting as I build on my previous awareness raising work, as Project Engagement lead of the Health and Social Care ALLIANCE’s Dementia Carer Voices Project.
The project provides a platform upon which carers can express their views and experiences of caring for a loved one living with dementia, with a view to raising awareness among health and social care professionals, and wider society of its impact on families and the importance of empowering carers in carrying out this difficult but vital role.
A key focus of my talks through the project is to highlight the impact that inspirational health and social care professionals can make to the journeys of carers across Scotland. People who appreciate and understand the unique challenges that dementia brings can be there to prop you up, and I absolutely believe as a carer if I was propped up a little bit with the right help and support, I could have given my Mum the best care and support in the world.
The experience of caring for my Mum undoubtedly brought great challenges, stress, isolation and sadness, but it was a role carried out through love and we enjoyed many touching moments of joy and satisfaction. Those special moments live long in my memory, and gave me a real boost of strength to get through the difficult times, and continue to do so now.
Dementia Carer Voices pledge background
Dementia Carer Voices has now gathered over 10,000  personal pledges as part of the “You Can Make a Difference” campaign. The campaign encourages people to listen to the experiences of people who have cared for a loved one with dementia and to think how they can make a positive difference in people’s lives. The team are delighted to have gotten such a strong response, and would like to take this opportunity to reflect on our journey up until now and how we have gotten to this point.
A fundamental aspect of the campaign has been about involvement. Throughout the UK tour, we have engaged with many thousands of  health and social care professionals, students, MSPs and members of the public, and have noticed a distinct increase in the number of pledges we have received when people are encouraged and supported to do so by colleagues and friends. We would therefore like to ask you to share this campaign, to encourage people you know to get involved and make a pledge to make a difference in the lives of people who have dementia, their families and carers. Through our own dedicated blog site, twitter account and website, the campaign is easily shared, and links people to a range of information.
Pledges can be submitted via email, twitter @DementiaCarerVo or on the blog site, and are also collected at every talk. We would very much appreciate it if you would promote this campaign; the talks and our films and encourage people to reflect on what they can do and how they can make a difference.
Resources
Dementia Carer Voices took the Make a Difference campaign to the Scottish Parliament in October 2014. View the pledges from First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Paul Gray, DG Health and Social Care and Chief Executive, NHSScotland.
NHS Ayrshire & Arran and the University of West Scotland  (UWS)  were key partners in the ‘#make a difference’ pledges and dementia awareness campaign.  This video includes interviews with First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Paul Gray, DG Health and Social Care and Chief Executive, NHSScotland, Fiona McQueen (Executive Nurse Director NHS Scotland), Professor Paul Martin (Deputy Principal UWS), Derek T Barron (Associate Nurse Director – Lead Nurse North Ayrshire Health and Social Care Partnership), Janice McAlister (Alzheimer Scotland Dementia Nurse Consultant), Lynn McLaughlin (Senior Charge Nurse).
Newsletter
View the May/June 2015 Dementia Carer Voices Newsletter.  Subscribe to the newslettermailing list.





Thanks for reading my blog, You can now view my 8 short flims here! http://tommy-on-tour-2011.blogspot.co.uk/2014/05/my-mums-name-was-joan-this-is-our-story.html
DCV photo DementiaCarerRGBlandscape3_zpsa2f3d5ff.jpg

Monday, 3 July 2017

Speaking Southport District General Hospital - 2 Talks July 3rd

Hi


With Great thanks to Sue Johnson Matron Quality and Performanceand colleauges 
Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust for the kind invite to give  two talks at the trust on July 3rd 


I am very grateful for this kind opportunity


 all are welcome by registering via the info below 



Tommy will be delivering two sessions on Monday  3rd July 2017 at the Clinical Education Centre Southport District General Hospital
All staff and members of the public are more than welcome to attend either session. 


Times are 10am-12pm or 2.15 pm -4pm

For more information and to book your place,

Please contact Sue Johnson   or  Michelle Kitson, 


Sue Johnson
Matron Quality and Performance
Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust

Twitter@SONHSTrust
Thanks for reading my blog, You can now view my 8 short flims here! http://tommy-on-tour-2011.blogspot.co.uk/2014/05/my-mums-name-was-joan-this-is-our-story.html
DCV photo DementiaCarerRGBlandscape3_zpsa2f3d5ff.jpg

Sunday, 2 July 2017

Thank you 80,000 people, Thank you for the 14,000 personal pledges

Thank you 80,000 people, Thank you for the  14,000 personal pledges



  The Dementia Carer Voices team would like to say a massive thank you to everyone who has made a pledge as part of the ‘You Can Make a Difference’ campaign and we are absolutely delighted to have received more than   14,000 pledges! This is an incredible milestone, and is only possible due to the commitment and compassion from everyone who has attended a talk or read about the campaign and made a promise to make a positive difference in the lives of people with dementia and their carers.
The team have been taking the You Can Make Difference campaign to 550 talks to date, reaching over 80,000, staff and students throughout the UK to highlight that no matter what their role, everyone working in Health and Social Care Services has the potential to transform the lives and experiences of people with dementia and their carers, often in seemingly small ways. 
The talks involve Project Engagement Lead, Tommy Whitelaw, sharing his own personal experiences from caring for his late mum, Joan, and the experiences of others who have written to him since he went on tour in 2011. The campaign allows staff the opportunity to reflect on these personal stories and make a pledge based on one key message or action that they will take away and apply to their everyday practice to make a difference. 




Irene Oldfather, Director, the ALLIANCE said:
 “This work reaches out and touches the hearts of many people, not least Health and Social Care students and professionals. These interactions are an ideal opportunity for staff to pause and reflect on what is really important to the people in their care.  Make a pledge, make a difference.”
Tommy Whitelaw, Dementia Carer Voices Project Engagement Lead, said: 
“Carers tell us that a little bit of time, listening and understanding can make an unimaginable difference during what can be a very difficult and lonely journeyThe pledges that we have received have been truly inspiring, and we’re looking forward to working with people and seeing those pledges fulfilled.”
How you can make a pledge We launched the ‘You Can Make a Difference’ Campaign in February  2014 and it has been so inspiring to see it grow. The campaign  has really shown the difference that every single person can make, no matter how small it may seem. If you have been inspired to make a pledge , please get in touch and email us your pledge at dementiacarervoices@alliance-scotland.org.uk.
 Your response has been truly inspiring, so from all of us here – thank you. We really can all make a difference. Stay tuned for the rest of 2017, which is shaping up to be a good year 🙂


       You can meet every person and read every pledge via the links below 

You can read  Case Studies on the different ways people are putting pledges into practice at the link HERE                  



April 2017

March 2017





November 2016
October 2016

August 2016
July 2016


May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
09/03/16 Hairmyers Hospital create their own pledge tree!
22/03/16 Bolton pledges to make a difference!
24/03/16 Hampshire Hospital Trust pledges!
31/03/16 184 pledges from University of Central Lancashire


February 2016
Bolton pledges to make a difference! https://dementiacarervoices.wordpress.com/2016/03/25/bolton-pledges-to-make-a-difference/ via  
January 2016



                               2015


           

December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015

December 2014
15/16.12.14 Norfolk and Suffolk

November 2014
03.11.14 Online pledges
07.11.14 Burton Hospital
13.11.14  Pledges of the week
24.11.14 The Retreat York
October 2014
13.10.14 More Pledges
27-30.10.14 NHS Highland Tour
September 2014
01.09.14  Teesside University
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
3/4.06.14 NHS Conference
27.06.14 BCDA Birmingham
May 2014 
April 2014
(08 -10).04.14 NHS Dumfries & Galloway 
March 2014
February 2014
19.02.14 NHS Fife
January 2014
            We began the campaign by asking 
              “What does caring mean to you?”

Dementia Carer Voices is going to the Scottish Parliament to celebrate the over 14,000

This week Dementia Carer Voices is going to the Scottish Parliament to celebrate the over 14,000 we have received over the years on our ‘Y...