Service users, volunteers and staff at Darnall Dementia Group met with at team from the University of Sheffield to share their opinions about the Sheffield Dementia Information Pack. The Pack is designed to provide useful information and advice about dementia, and provide ‘signposts’ to key sources of support in Sheffield.
The team from the University of Sheffield are keen to ensure the Pack contains what people with memory problems and their supporters actually want and need to know. After introductions, and a sandwich lunch and drinks the discussions began. One of the volunteers, Will, had devised a step-by-step approach to discussing the main sections of the Pack. There then followed one-to-one conversations with all service users during which their key observations and comments were noted. After a welcome break for refreshments in the sunshine a final group discussion was held to seek a consensus about the kind of information about dementia desired by service users.
David Reid, one of the team from the University of Sheffield, said afterwards: “On behalf of the team, I would like to thank the service users, the volunteers and Lynsey for organizing this successful consultation session today. We have learned a great deal that we can use in our plans for the Pack. For example, we learned that the positive advice in the Pack about how to ‘live well’ with dementia was particularly valued. Some service users talked specifically about the importance of there being sources of ‘hope’ after the diagnosis. Also, we learned that the directory of services in Sheffield contained in the Pack was valued as it offered ways of meeting other people. Meeting other people and being able to talk was identified by service users as really important. Finally, we learned that some people would appreciate a spoken version of the Pack. Many thanks again to everyone who helped make this such a useful and enjoyable session”
The Sheffield Dementia Information Pack is updated every 6 months and can be downloaded for free from www.sheffield.ac.uk/snm/dementiapack. Paper copies can be requested by emailing David Reid (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Tony Warnes (email@example.com).