SILVERBURN is to become one of Scotland’s first ‘dementia friendly’ shopping centres.
The centre, in the Pollock district of Glasgow, will work with charity Alzheimer Scotland to offer more support to shoppers living with the illness.
Staff will be offered special training to help them deal with the needs of those with dementia and also work at improving lighting, signage and use of colour in a way that could benefit sufferers.
Dementia is a progressive illness caused by damage to and destruction of brain cells which gives rise to a number of symptoms including the gradual loss of memory, reasoning and communication skills.
The number of people living with dementia in Scotland is predicted to double in the next 25 years.
There are different types of dementia with the most common being Alzheimer’s disease and vascular dementia.
There are around 4,500 people in Glasgow living with a diagnosis of dementia, although the true number is believed to be nearly double.
Glasgow City Council hope they to change the city to enable people with dementia to enjoy the best quality of life possible and to ensure they are treated with dignity and respect.
Councillor Archie Graham, chairman of the Glasgow HSCP, said: “Dementia is a growing issue that we can ill-afford to ignore. By putting in place longer-term strategies now, we can begin to build the kind of wide-ranging response we need to address the issue of dementia in future.
“Health and social care services have a vital role to play in making sure families have access to the best treatment and support there is available. But if we are to avoid people with dementia being disadvantaged even further as they go about their daily lives, then all sectors of society must play a part also.
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“This is why I am so encouraged by Silverburn taking on board the need for us all to be more responsive to those affected by dementia. Silverburn’s aspiration for their staff and the centre environment to be dementia friendly is something I hope will be replicated across the city in the years ahead. Our hope is that all Glaswegians recognise they can do their bit to help our city become dementia friendly.”
Jim Pearson, director of policy & research, Alzheimer Scotland, said: “I am delighted to welcome this new dementia strategy for Glasgow which has been developed by Glasgow City Health and Social Care Partnership (GCHSPC) in collaboration with ourselves and co-produced with people with dementia, their families, carers and a wide range of stakeholders. The strategy provides a framework for action for the whole community and I look forward to seeing positive advances across the city over the next three years.
“There are 90,000 people living with dementia in Scotland and the number is on the rise. If you have any questions about dementia and of the services available in Scotland call Alzheimer Scotland’s 24 Helpline on 0808 808 3000.”
David Pierotti, General Manager at Silverburn added: “Silverburn is committed to becoming a dementia friendly shopping centre to ensure that we’re equipped to welcome all of our shoppers. We are proud to be a part of the local community.”