On January 17, 2018, the Multigenerational Family Center, together with the association Spominčica, opened the first Dementia-friendly point in our municipality, and the tenth such point in Slovenia.
Spominčica Association helps to raise awareness about dementia by cooperating with various organizations. Through all its activities, it establishes a dementia – friendly environment that incourages the affected individuals for active integration into society, hepls them maintain their independence, provides them with support and thus contributes to improving the quality of life of these people.
One of the basic support activities for strengthening this kind of environment are Dementia Friendly Points (DFP). They ensure the involvement and empowerment of people with dementia and their relatives in the local community.
In Slovenia there are currently more than 32,000 people with dementia. On average three people take care of one individual with dementia (relatives, health and social workers). In the next twenty years the number of dementia affected people will double. How will we deal with this as a society?
The early recognition of signs of dementia is vital. Early diagnosis and timely treatment allow a lifestyle change that slows the progression of the disease, reduces anxiety, provides the access to non-medical support, raisies awareness and reduces the stigma associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
The objectives of the DFP program are: including people with Alzheimer ‘s disease and their relatives, ensuring the transition to the paradigm of early diagnosis, creating a dementia-friendly environment.
The multigenerational family center Cerknica is the coordinator for the establishment of DFP in the local environment. The tasks of the coordinator are: organizing education for the interested organizations in their area, cooperating with Spominčica in building the DFP map and, together with organizations in the local environment, achieving the objectives of the DFP. Coordinator expands the network of potential DFP’s. Those are usually places where a larger numbers of people can gather, the DFP offers printed materials with information and training for employees who come into direct contact with users (post office, shops, banks).
After appropriate training, the organization wishing to become a DFP obtains a Certificate of meeting the DFP criteria, a DFP label and the materials with information on dementia.
People with dementia can come to the Dementia Friendly Point for information. In particular those in the early stages of the disease who are still independent and active, the relatives of the affected people, as well as other interested individuals can get the information about the disease. Dementia friendly points also offer help to people with dementia as it often happens they get lost and do not find their way home or do not recognize the environment in they live in.