Who is DEMENTIA SOUTH AFRICA?
Memory is the cornerstone of our past. Thinking and reasoning shape our present and our future. Communicating with others and caring for oneself are central to our social functioning. Without these, our well-being is ruthlessly compromised. Yet, in the developed world dementia is diagnosed every few seconds. One in every three persons with HIV/AIDS will develop dementia. While this will affect many South Africans, dementia is mostly unrecognized, misunderstood and undiagnosed. It results in further suffering, stigmatization, abuse and neglect.
As a leading South African authority on all forms of dementia, DEMENTIA SA strives to minimize the impact that dementia has on individuals, families and communities. By taking an innovative approach to service delivery that includes all relevant constituencies, DEMENTIA SA is a leading provider of awareness, information, education and support services to all those affected by dementia. It vigorously advocates the rights and dignity of those living with dementia. All services are supported by ongoing research.
DEMENTIA SA is committed to upholding the dignity of all persons affected by dementia and places a premium on providing services in under-developed areas. It is at the forefront of improving the quality of life of those living with dementia and those who care for them.
projects and services
Our primary aim is to provide innovative services and support to address the challenges faced by people with dementia, their families and carers in South Africa, focusing mainly in under developed areas. These include the provision of:
Community and Professional support:
Capacity development and community development through awareness raising, training, support groups, skills development, family counselling, support groups, advocacy (influencing those in power to take up a cause for the greater good of the citizens)
Support Groups: It is the objective of Dementia SA that all care givers and people with Dementia have a strong support network with access to reliable resources. Dementia SA convenes a number of Dementia/Alzheimer support groups designed to help those with family members afflicted with these conditions. The groups are focussed on sharing coping techniques, management and other strategies for caring for someone with memory loss.
Public Awareness Programme: Community awareness talks are requested by community groups, HIV and AIDS organisations, women’s organisations, social workers, care givers, nurses and medical staff. Dementia SA participates in community events, in partnership with the Department of Social Development and other community organisations.
Skills development: Dementia SA holds an Annual International Learning and Sharing Conference with is accredited with Continued Professional Development points (CPD) required by medical and other allied health care professionals to maintain their professional status. Included are home-based carers and community development workers, social workers and social auxiliary workers, ancillary health care workers, nursing assistants, community workers of the Departments of Health and Social Development.
Family counselling: Dementia SA’s core support services rendered by the organisation includes family counselling, family mediation, face-to-face counselling, remote counselling via Skype, tele- and email counselling and referral to appropriate services as required.
Advocacy: Foundation services including advocacy and lobbying comment on National Policy, for example, the National Health Insurance (NHI) and extensive input into the Older Person’s ACT (number 13 of 2006).
Introduction to Dementia Training: (accredited and developed in conjunction with Dementia SA for South African conditions with Dementia UK) for home based carers, community workers and residential care facilities.
Specialised training for Magistrates, staff at the office of the Master of the Supreme Court, members of the SA Police Service and other key staff members of community institutions dealing with the elderly.
The internationally recognised Learning and Sharing Conference on Person Centered Care and latest trends in dementia is a 2 day symposium that includes international specialists and accommodates 200 people.
Research: Dementia SA is committed to undertake research on the rights of older persons in South Africa and their ability to exercise their choice of how they wish to live out their lives.