When a family member suffers from dementia, it can affect the whole family. Yet research studies tend to look no further than the impact on the person with dementia and their immediate carers. The wider impact, particularly the effect on relationships between grandparents and their younger grandchildren, is often ignored.
On 24 September, the Oxford Institute of Ageing (OIA) held a workshop aimed at educating professionals including health care staff, social workers, teachers and voluntary workers about recent European research and practice development in this field. This workshop is the first in a series of outreach initiatives surrounding the recent 21school-funded project "Managing Together".
Led by Prof Sarah Harper and Jenny La Fontaine, of the Oxford Institute of Ageing, "Managing Together" explores the impact of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias on the relationship between grandparents and their younger grandchildren. In June 2009, the OIA was awarded a dissemination grant of over £18,000 by the Alzheimer’s Society, to promote the results of this study.
This workshop was the first of a series of initiatives aimed at increasing the relevance and impact of the original research, which will include further workshops, leaflets and other practical guidance materials for health care professionals. The workshop was an exciting opportunity to engage with a broader audience, increasing the impact of the "Managing Together" project and improving the services provided to families coping with dementia.
Further programme details are available here.