Yesterday I had the pleasure of testing our latest prototype with my mum’s Alzheimer’s group. Testing went really well and we’re now extremely close to finalising our product, ready for crowdfunding in April.
The group my mum helps to look after meets every Thursday; there are around 15 people with varying forms of dementia and 4 carers, my mum included. They do a wide variety of activities from going on walks, to singing, to going bowling and to the cinema.
This is now the third time I’ve been out with the group and it was just as fantastic as the last 2. I feel very fortunate to have been exposed to dementia, not only because it's extremely educational and eye-opening, but also because it's great to see that there is support out there. Whilst you see the admittedly heart-breaking side effects of the disease, it’s lovely to see everyone so happy and enjoying life. I would challenge anyone to spend the day with these people and not spend the whole day smiling and laughing. In my eyes, dementia is not something that anyone should feel embarrassed about and so I believe it's very important that we start educating people about the disease.
One thing that became very apparent to me yesterday, is that everyday life is hard, and I was only helping for one day. For a loved one, caring for someone with dementia must be exhausting. With no cure, we need to find solutions in order to offer a better life. We need innovation and we need it fast.