Since 2011, Alzheimer’s Society have been travelling the UK on their roadshow to raise awareness of dementia in local communities. The organisation, which is the UK’s leading dementia charity, provides a wealth of support and has recently opened a new memory cafe in Andover.
Kit Malthouse just attended the roadshow and spoke to Alzheimer’s Society staff and volunteers about the new cafe. He said: “The Memory Café is a great chance for those living with dementia in Andover and those caring for them to come and socialise. There are activities there too that help improve memory and cognitive processes. I encourage anyone who’s looking after someone with dementia to get in touch and for everyone to spread the word about this opportunity.”
Dementia describes a set of symptoms that may include memory loss and difficulties with thinking, problem-solving or language. Dementia is caused when the brain is damaged by diseases. Currently, 1,714 people are living with dementia in Test Valley and the numbers are expected to rise in the coming years. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common type of dementia, affecting 62 per cent of those diagnosed.
Kit welcomed recent efforts by the government to grow and the speed up research into better treatments and care, saying that “It shows that Britain means it when it says that we’re going to be at the front of facing this generational challenge.”
Between 2012 and 2015 research funding doubled to over £60 million a year to develop key infrastructure and catalyse research activity to make the UK a centre of research.
There are also moves to train new researchers. The wider aim will be to develop capacity across the spectrum of disciplines to expand the field. Unless this happens we won’t make progress on finding better treatments or cures.
Last year the Government announced a further £300 million for funding dementia research by 2020 with £150 million for the Dementia Research Institute that Kit championed as Deputy Mayor of London.