RUTH Brooks is a dementia response co-ordinator, a position that has been specially created by Leeds Jewish Welfare Board.
Ruth, who has personal experience of family members having dementia, previously worked in mental health and learning disability settings.
To mark the Welfare Board’s 140th anniversary, it is aiming to make 140 dementia friends. The dementia counselling service is a free service for carers and those in the early stages of memory loss.
Ruth is working one-to-one with carers to make sure they have an occasional break and receive the help they need.
“Looking after someone with dementia is at times very demanding, so we have dementia support champions, carers and befrienders, who have been trained to create a good relationship with families,” she said.
Victoria Sandler, LJWB marketing co-ordinator, said the focus of the project is always to welcome people with dementia or memory loss.
“We want all our activities here to be inclusive, and the good thing, of course, is we have all those activities under one roof,” she said.
The initiative is part of the Living Project, funded by the Big Lottery, and lasts three years, the period that Ruth’s role is funded for.
Victoria added: “We all try to cope the best way we can, but sometimes we have to gain courage to reach out and ask for professional help.
“Once people take that first step then their problem is halved.
“We have so many services here, such as Moorcare and a group of befrienders, so often people ask for one thing and then find so many more that can assist.”
Contact Ruth: 0759 0862509 or firstname.lastname@example.org