Kiama hosts dementia forum

Lead researcher Dr Lyn Phillipson, from the University of Wollongong, said Kiama's large ageing population made it an ideal pilot site for the forum.

Lead researcher Dr Lyn Phillipson, from the University of Wollongong, said Kiama's large ageing population made it an ideal pilot site for the forum.

KIAMA will seek to further its efforts to be a dementia-friendly community when it hosts a forum later this month.

Earlier this year, in an Australian first, Kiama was named as the pilot site for a project to create dementia-friendly communities.

The initiative will eventually be rolled out throughout Australia.

The project partners are the University of Wollongong's Global Challenges Program, Alzheimer's Australia and Kiama Council.

It aims to change the way people with dementia interact within their social and physical environments.

As part of this process, a free dementia-friendly concepts and communities forum will take place in Kiama on Tuesday, September 16.

Presented by Steve Milton, it will discuss issues such as why social action is the way to reduce stigma and change community attitudes about dementia; examine the role of partnerships in creating dementia-friendly communities; and identify the outcomes that are being achieved by dementia-friendly communities and how they can be measured.

Mr Milton is one of three directors of Innovations in Dementia, a not-for-profit community interest company in the UK.

Innovations in Dementia work with people with dementia, partner organisations and professionals to develop and test projects that enhance the lives of people with dementia.

September also marks Dementia Awareness Month.

Lead researcher Dr Lyn Phillipson, from the University of Wollongong, said Kiama's large ageing population made it an ideal pilot site.

It is estimated about 1200 people in Kiama are living with dementia, with that number expected to reach about 3700 by 2050.

The lecture will take place at Kiama Anglican Church.

Registration is at 1pm followed by the lecture from 1.15pm to 2pm.

There will also be a workshop discussion from 2pm to 3.10pm.

Bookings are essential.

RSVP by Tuesday, September 9 by phoning 6278 8934 or emailing dementiafriendly@alzheimers.org.au

The general public, people with dementia, carers, service providers, businesses and local government are invited.

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