Brecon Beacons hope to become first ‘dementia-friendly’ National Park in UK

After months of hard work Brecon Beacons National Park Authority is delighted to announce that it is the first UK National Park to be officially recognised as ‘Working towards becoming dementia-friendly’.

In August 2014 the Alzheimer’s Society officially recognised Brecon as the first community in Wales to be ‘Working to become dementia-friendly’.

Last month the National Park Authority provided members with the implementation plan, which incorporated staff awareness training and Rhiannon Davies, Chair of Brecon Dementia-Friendly Community informed the Authority that the National Park was now officially recognised as ‘Working towards becoming dementia-friendly’.

Rhiannon Davies said of the initiative: “This is a great achievement for everyone involved. Brecon Beacons National Park Authority has shown its commitment from the very beginning, so it’s absolutely fitting that they have become one of the first organisations in Wales to be awarded this status.”

Pictured left to right:  Cllr Paul Ashton, Mrs Melanie Doel, Rhiannon Davies, Mrs Julie James and Mrs Elizabeth Lewis.

Pictured left to right: Cllr Paul Ashton, Mrs Melanie Doel, Rhiannon Davies, Mrs Julie James and Mrs Elizabeth Lewis.

The dementia-friendly programme aims to improve inclusion and quality of life for people with dementia by bringing together individuals, groups, organisations and local businesses.

Once the goals are achieved Brecon Beacons National Park Authority will act as a Champion and use its model to create a clear blueprint on how to become dementia-friendly which they will share, assist and support with the family of UK National Parks to do the same. In Brecon, a pharmacist, police officers and mountain rescue staff are just a few of the members of the local community who are helping to make the town dementia-friendly.

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Sue Phelps, Director of Alzheimer’s Society in Wales said; “By 2015 there will be over 45,000 people living with dementia in Wales. Individuals, organisations and businesses are embracing the need to understand how to support people with dementia so that they can remain independent and continue doing the things they enjoy. We are delighted that the Brecon Beacons National Park Authority has made significant progress in their ambition to become dementia-friendly and we hope this means more people affected by dementia will feel supported to enjoy the wonderful countryside of the Brecon Beacons. I wish the Brecon Beacons National Park Authority every success with their aim to become the first Dementia Friendly National Park in the UK and hope that other National Park Authorities will follow in their footsteps.”

For more information on becoming part of the National Park dementia-friendly initiative, please contact Elizabeth Lewis on 01874 620 426 or email Elizabeth.lewis@breconbeacons.org

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