November 26, 2014

Creating dementia friendly environments

These resources are available for loan to members of AANSW - if you would like to reserve them please email the Library on

A guide to becoming a dementia-friendly community : report, September 2014
Alzheimer's Australia NSW
Why is Becoming A Dementia-Friendly Community Important? Imagine if you woke up tomorrow and were told you had a diagnosis of dementia. How would you like people to view you? Would you like to still be included in your local community or told you could not participate anymore? How would you feel to be ignored, lose friends, and be treated with disrespect? Would this be giving you and your family a fair go? This has been my experience and many others have told me they have had similar experiences. Our quality of life is really influenced by a sense of self-worth and by being connected with the community, but the stigma associated with dementia can lead to loneliness and feeling that we aren’t welcome anymore. Other people living with dementia have said things like ‘the doctor just ignored me’, and a carer said ‘I’ve seen a shop assistant roll her eyes just because we needed a little more time’. We become worried about telling people that we have dementia, because we are often afraid of what their reaction will be. The physical environment and the design of buildings can also make it difficult to access shops, health services, businesses and recreational areas. Simple things like clear signage to where public toilets are would really help us find our way around.
Graeme Atkins

Creating culturally appropriate outside spaces and experiences for people with dementia : using nature and the outdoors in person-centred care
Edited by Mary Marshall and Jane Gilliard
Demonstrating that it is essential to be sensitive to the cultural backgrounds of people with dementia in order to provide truly person-centred care, this book shows that it is possible to create culturally appropriate outdoor spaces and experiences that resonate with people with dementia on a fundamental level and are a source of comfort and wellbeing.

Designing balconies, roof terraces and roof gardens for people with dementia
by Mary Marshall
This book is one of a series to assist providers, architects, commissioners and managers to improve the design of buildings which are used by people with dementia. The book has been produced in response to an increasing number of requests for advice about the provision of outside space for buildings of more than one storey. As land values increase and people wish to remain in familiar inner city areas, we are more likely to see higher multi-storey care homes. This book describes practical ways in which new and existing buildings can maximise opportunities for people with dementia to access outside space using balconies, roof terraces and roof gardens.

 A way to stay home modification assessment and planning tool
This tool has been created to help individuals think about their homes and what possible modifications may be needed. Each page goes through the home from access point, to help prompt areas of consideration and assist people to identify areas where they may feel unsafe and if with modification, they can feel safe in that area of their home.

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