One thing that I’ve heard a good many times since the Wednesday Group first started is, “It’s changed my life coming here”. At first it seemed an astonishing thing to say. How can coming to a friendship group once a week change anyone’s life? But apparently it can. One lady said of her husband, who had been very depressed after his diagnosis of dementia, “He’s come alive again. He’s accepted his memory loss and he’s started to enjoy himself.” People have told us how coming to the group has given them confidence, not just to interact with members but to go and join other clubs they wouldn’t have thought of doing previously.
It may sound impressive. I hope it does, but it’s not rocket science. It’s just about accepting that people with dementia are human beings. Like all of us they need the security of knowing that they matter and that they belong to a society that cares about them. This is exactly what our fantastic volunteers achieve. They shop, cook, make endless cups of tea, organise games, devise quizzes, dream up ideas for craft work, help and encourage members to try new activities, keep mobile and make friends. No-one is ever left out. Even if they don’t wish to join in the activities, someone always goes to chat to them and before long there is laughter. It is an absolute privilege to work with such a warm hearted, generous spirited group of people. Yes, together, our volunteers do change lives, the lives of members and their own lives too. There’s nothing more satisfying than knowing you’ve helped someone else and made a difference to their life. That has to be worth doing.
For more information on the Wednesday Group call Jan on 01777 709974.