I've approved what I hope will be a really fun project for young people that will also help them to learn more about dementia and reduce the fear and stigma associated with it.
Councl press release:
Reading Borough Council has teamed up with a Berkshire based theatre company to run a series of workshops in local schools looking at issues around dementia.
The aim is to develop a ‘dementia friendly community’ where people with the condition can live a good life, be understood and receive support. To achieve this there needs to be a rise in awareness amongst younger people so the fear and stigma surrounding the condition is reduced.
The Hands-On Company are working with the council, who are providing the funds, to run workshops using drama and puppetry to explore social education . Starting in September, a team of teacher facilitators and gap year role players will bring issues like citizenship, respect, rights and responsibility to life through a range of activities. These include drama enactment, group work, reflective discussion, information sharing, monologue creation, improvisations and many other forms of interaction. Students will be shown how they can communicate the content of the workshop to other members of their school.
The workshops are aimed at year 6 primary pupils and year 10 secondary.
Rachel Eden, Reading’s Lead Councillor for Adult Social Care, said: “This project will be great fun for the young people but also have a serious purpose and will help them to understand more about a condition that affects more and more people. I hope it will be a good step towards making our community more welcoming and supportive for people with dementia.”
Jo Bryant from The Hands-On Company, said: “This is an exciting opportunity for local children to reflect on creating a dementia friendly community in a Hands-On Way.”