Leeds united on dementia care

By John Fisher, February 13, 2014
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Umbrella group: Maria Holdsworth (left), Stephen Lewis and Rebecca Weinberg launch the partnership

Umbrella group: Maria Holdsworth (left), Stephen Lewis and Rebecca Weinberg launch the partnership

Key Leeds Jewish welfare providers have joined forces to develop an integrated programme supporting those living with dementia, their carers and their families.

Donisthorpe Hall, Leeds Jewish Housing Association and Leeds Jewish Welfare Board comprise the Jubilee Partnership, which will work to deliver services more effectively.

The project has been made possible by a £75,000 grant from the Six Point Foundation, enabling the recruitment of a dementia programme development manager. Interviews for the post have been held this week. An integral part of the job will be to align the dementia services currently on offer from the three organisations.

"We will look at how our organisations interact with the community and forge good links to help dementia sufferers," said Donisthorpe Hall's Maria Holdsworth.

For the welfare board, Rebecca Weinberg said there was still a stigma associated with dementia so "it takes a lot for people to lift their heads above the parapet and call for help".

She hoped for "a seamless referral process within the programme, so that service users who become more acute and need more services will be referred onwards expediently".

The housing association's Stephen Lewis pointed out that, as it provided accommodation for many elderly Jews, "we are seeing the need to provide support for those with early stages of dementia. "This partnership will enable us to extend that support through a more cohesive, directed programme, which at the moment we don't have."

Mrs Weinberg added that the dementia partnership was "a first for Leeds and I feel sure other cities will follow".

    Last updated: 1:44pm, February 13 2014