Swindon is one of 10 areas around the country selected by Alzheimer’s Society to take part in an initiative aimed at building and shaping more dementia friendly communities.

With someone developing dementia every three minutes and currently no cure, the condition is set to be the 21st century’s biggest killer.

Alzheimer’s Society is focusing on 10 areas in England to improve conditions for those with dementia. The areas are each receiving additional support to enhance the inclusion and empowerment of people living with dementia in their communities.

This Department of Health funded ‘accelerator sites’ project is a 12 month scheme where different UK towns and sites have applied to have additional support to make their community as dementia friendly as possible over the course of the year. Alzheimer’s Society suggests that people take action as part of their community through becoming a dementia friend by visiting www.dementiafriends.org.uk.

Alzheimer’s Society is working with Swindon Dementia Action Alliance as well as Swindon’s local communities and people affected by dementia to assess the work that they have already done, create feasible goals and help engage with different parts of society to increase awareness and support for those with the condition.

In April Swindon Borough Council appointed a Dementia Friendly Co-ordinator who is responsible for bringing together everyone who is working towards making Swindon dementia friendly.

Julie Linter, Alzheimer’s Society services manager for Swindon said: “I am delighted that Swindon has been selected and there are estimated to be more than 2,000 people living with dementia in Swindon. I know that by continuing to work together with the local community in a unified manner we can improve the lives of those affected by dementia.”

Alzheimer’s Society aim to increase the number of Dementia Friends across the community through increasing engagement with specific areas of interest such as BAME communities, LGBT groups, schools, councillors and MPs.

Another key focus will be encouraging local businesses to become members of the local Dementia Action Alliances, uniting a range of organisations across a village, county or region can be a great vehicle to develop dementia friendly communities.

Alzheimer’s Society is calling on the public to take action to help improve care and offer help and understanding to those with the condition within Swindon now.

Visit alzheimers.org.uk for more information.