The Danes visited to see how Scotland assists people living with dementia.
One of Edinburgh’s specialist charities gave a warm welcome to a delegation from Denmark keen to learn about how Scotland assists people living with dementia.
The Eric Liddell Community, which operates a specialist dementia day service in Edinburgh, together with other support services, including ones for unpaid carers, hosted representatives from Odense, the third largest municipality in Denmark.
The delegation included directors from the Department for the Elderly and Disabled and politicians which initially contacted the About Dementia Project at Age Scotland.
John MacMillan, CEO, The Eric Liddell Community said: “Our colleagues in Denmark have their own dementia strategy and were interested to visit Scotland and see how we are approaching dementia care here.
“Age Scotland suggested we had a number of interesting initiatives and services and asked if we could host the delegation as part of their visit. Of course, we were delighted to do so.
“The visit began with a presentation on the work of The Eric Liddell Community with a question and answer session. Two of the delegation members joined in the afternoon’s activities with the Dementia Day Service. This was followed by a tour of the dementia care facilities, including the charity’s sensory room.
‘’The Eric Liddell Community Day Care Service is unique in offering people living with dementia access to a stimulating and intriguing environment that can heighten awareness and encourage participants to relax and engage with their surroundings in a safe, failure-free and non-clinical setting. Our Multi-Sensory Room optimises the effects of various stimulus and can have calming effects for people living with dementia.’’
Colm McBriarty, community development officer, Age Scotland About Dementia Team added: “International collaborations and partnerships are a great way to learn about different approaches to addressing similar challenges. Scotland has a rich story to tell about how we provide support to people living with dementia and unpaid carers, and Dementia Friendly Communities have been central to that.
With a new dementia strategy imminent, it was a great time for our guests to visit and learn about what we do in Scotland, but also for us to learn about what they do well in Denmark.
“When we were organising the schedule for our Danish visitors, we wanted them to visit and learn from organisations that are based in the local community. The Eric Liddell Community was a natural choice for our Edinburgh-based guests, as they have been providing advice, support, and empowerment to local people – with a focus on people affected by dementia – for over 40 years.
“We are hugely grateful to everyone at the Community who made us feel so welcome with food, music, a tour of the Community building, and a detailed presentation and discussion about their activities that make such a difference to local people’s lives.”