The Wokingham Paper

IN THE COMMUNITY: What Younger People With Dementia Wokingham has been doing during coronavirus lockdown

Younger People With Dementia
Members and supporters of Younger People With Dementia in Padworth earlier this year

Lockdown has not curtailed our services, which are used by people living with Young Onset Dementia and their carers.

Some creative thinking, thanks to donations from local organisations like Wokingham United Charities, has led to a raft of new online services to combat the detrimental impact of isolation on this vulnerable group.

As a result of lockdown YPWD has reached out to grant-making organisations to assist in keeping services available during the pandemic. As with many charities, fundraising donations have all but disappeared since March.

The charity has been supported by a number of generous organisations including Wokingham United Charities, which helps needy people resident in the parishes of Wokingham, Wokingham Without, St Nicholas Hurst, Ruscombe and Finchampstead who are in poverty, hardship or distress.

Thanks to Wokingham United Charities YPWD can maintain employment of its specialist team who can continue to provide live online video workshops, regular calls to carers, pre-recorded workshop videos and personalised activity boxes. Maintaining the contact that was there from
before lockdown.

This frontline service is incredibly important for many, as one of YPWD’s people living with young onset dementia explained: “The team have been there for me especially on my low days. They’ve been caring and understanding. It’s lovely to see some of the group online each week.”

Tracey Hedgecox, from Wokingham United Charities, said: “I’m delighted that we have been able to fund YPWD’s work in Wokingham. Providing meaningful activities will allow those with Dementia under the age of 65 to lead a more fulfilling life and hopefully slow down the progression of the disease. Providing support and information for the carers is also vital.”

YPWD’s director Mark Hainy said: “The donations that the charity has received during lockdown are directly targeted at delivering services, we welcome Wokingham United Charities’ grant at a time when they are under immense pressure to help as many charities as possible.  Without YPWD there would be very little support available to those living with Young Onset Dementia and their carers, increasing the possibility of health crises for some.”

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