As many of you know, September is Dementia Awareness Month and we have a number of fantastic events being held throughout the country and I encourage you to attend if you can.
These events are designed to raise awareness about dementia and to empower the more than 413,000 Australians who live with dementia, as well as their families and carers.
As part of Dementia Awareness Month, Emeritus Professor Steven Sabat, from Georgetown University USA, will be our international guest speaker, presenting at events in Brisbane, Canberra, Sydney and Melbourne beginning from 11th September through to 14th September.
Professor Sabat’s talk – ‘Forget memory loss – what about the person?’ will focus on breaking down the stereotypes for people living with dementia while being supported and empowered to take control of their lives. Professor Sabat says that people with dementia can, in fact, make new memories and they therefore should not be thought of as having ‘memory loss’.
Other exciting Dementia Awareness Month activities include public lectures, trivia nights, morning teas and photo exhibitions. Events are being held in capital cities and in regional locations in every state and territory.
On World Alzheimer’s Day (September 21) a 24-page publication titled The Brain: Dementia will be published in the Australian Financial Review. The publication is a partnership between Dementia Australia and the Queensland Brain Institute.
The comprehensive 24-page magazine and digital publication will provide readers Australia-wide with the most up-to-date information on dementia research, treatment and support services.
For further details and a list of the activities that are being held are available at the Dementia Awareness Month landing page.
In the meantime, our governance changes are continuing to be implemented as we move to a single unified organisation. The executive team is currently visiting state and territory offices with the Workstream Leads to understand the services and programs provided in each area and have acknowledged the fantastic work being undertaken in each of these areas. There will be further announcements in relation to the unified model later this year.
Our busy schedule continues in October, with our 17th Dementia Australia Biennial National Dementia Conference from 17-20 October in Melbourne.
The conference, with its theme of ‘Be the Change’, will include a series of workshops and speakers including Kate Swaffer, CEO, Dementia Alliance International, author and dementia advocate Christine Bryden, Professor Dawn Brooker from the UK who is director for the Association for Dementia Studies at the University of Worchester and Naomi Feil from the Validation Training Institute in the USA.
The conference will provide a unique opportunity to transform the way we think about dementia. It will inspire delegates to explore more innovative and creative ways to improve the quality of life and support of people, of all ages, living with dementia.
Click here for further information about the conference.
I do hope to see you at some of the forthcoming events.
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER