Aylesford School host first Dementia Cafe

20 December 2019

Aylesford School host first Dementia Cafe
    Aylesford Host Dementia Cafe

The Dementia Café is the work of Mr Neeve and our A Team which is Aylesford Schools’ Student Council. The council are always looking for ways to be more community focused as a school. Our Dementia Café was inspired by the work of Paul Murray at the Oasis Academy, Isle of Sheppey who kindly allowed us to visit one of their very successful café’s in the summer.

We would also like to thank, Laura Summers from Building a Dementia Friendly Maidstone and Bekka Fuszard the Chair of Kent County Council Dementia Friendly Communities Team and the National Lottery Community Fund for supporting us with the project so far. It would certainly not have been possible without their input and we are now planning to have this as a regular feature of the school calendar with our next Dementia Friendly Community Café  on Thursday 26th March and another in July.
The day was a tremendous success with all guests living and supporting those with Dementia extremely pleased to have been invited and all enjoyed the range of activities that we had on offer.

We were honoured to have two guests of honour with both Mayor Jill Anderson and Councillor Peter Homewood thoroughly entertained by students Aimee and Ashton dancing to Elvis’ Jail House Rock, a Christmas monologue read by Isobel and Amy, carol singing from our Year 7 choir and our Year 9 guitar ensemble ably led by Freya and Jack. All guests were well looked after by the A Team and Mr Kenmure’s catering students who showed tremendous character in welcoming our guests, keeping their teas and coffees topped up and giving them a continuous supply of cakes and scones throughout the afternoon.

We were also grateful to have a number of stalls for guests to enjoy. Thanks must go to Cobtree Young Farmers and Kent Life who volunteered to bring animals from Kent Life such as Gerbils, Chickens, Ferrets, Rabbits and a Tortoise. Their generosity was well received and this proved extremely popular with all those at the café both young and old. This was especially the case for our guests from Amherst Court and Ashley Gardens Care homes. We were particularly pleased to have our Art Competition for years 7 8 and 9 judged by David, an artist and Ashley Gardens Resident. Congratulations to George and Alicia (Year 7) and Tiffany (year 8) who won prizes such as Gravity Vouchers, Bowling Vouchers and Sweets and Books which were generously arranged by Ann Franks from The Garden of England Homecare. 
Thanks must finally go to other stall holders at the event for their support: Stuart from Sing for your Life, Jaime Jukes from Care UK who’s new care home will be opening in April, Grahame Hardy from the Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust, Jan Jensen from the Alzheimer’s Society Time for Dementia Project.

Miss Kelvie- Headteacher

    “We are proud and honoured to host and organise a Dementia Cafe at Aylesford School. It is no surprise given that the numbers being diagnosed with Dementia is on the increase, that this is a cause close to my heart, having supported a close family member with Dementia.

    As well as achieving good academic qualifications, we also aim to develop good character in our students. Our students understand the importance of being an inclusive community and are keen to support people and raise awareness of Dementia. We look forward to welcoming many more to our next Dementia Cafe event”

    Grahame Hardy – Specialist Nurse for Dementia Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust

      “a fantastic event, happy to help for the next one in 2020 – thank you to Mr Neeve and all the staff and students involved Congratulations on such a wonderful event

      The model of the Dementia Cafés incorporates support, knowledge and an understanding for people living with Dementia or memory loss. They can make a huge difference to the person which also increases their well-being, emotions and feelings which would remain with them. Recent research from the Alzheimer’s Society states that 99% of people who go along to Dementia Cafés say that it has provided them with useful information. The Dementia Café event at Aylesford School was a fantastic event, using local Community Resources and also the students and pupils who were so confident and engaging with the people living with Dementia was so lovely to see. Thank you to Mr Neeve and all the staff and students involved and Congratulations on such a wonderful event”.

      For more information of future events please contact Philip Neeve info@aylesford.kent.sch.uk Please follow Aylesford School’s Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/AylesfordSchoolKent/ or visit https://www.aylesford.kent.sch.uk/