Family Carers Matter Programme
Are you caring for someone with dementia?
- Do you visit a friend or relative with dementia in a care home and want to remain involved in their care?
- Do you struggle to find something to talk about when visiting a friend or relative with dementia?
- Are you a former carer of someone with dementia who now supports other carers as a volunteer?
If you have answered Yes to any of the above, then THIS PROGRAMME IS FOR YOU!
What is it?
This two day introductory programme (with a gap between the days) will help you understand the benefits of life story work for yourself as a family carer, the person with dementia whom you care for and for paid care workers. You will learn about life story work to encourage the person you care for to create a meaningful record of their life to date along with their hopes and wishes for the future. Whether the person you care for is newly diagnosed with dementia or now needs more care in their daily life, either at home or in a care home, this course will benefit you. If you are a former carer who now works voluntarily this course will enable you to support other carers.
Why should I attend?
Having a sense of who we are is something we often take for granted. People living with dementia are often defined by their diagnosis or living situation, rather than who they are as a person. This can have a detrimental effect on their relationships with others, particularly those who are paid to provide support and care for them, as they may know little of the uniqueness of the individual and the dementia takes centre stage. Life story work is a powerful way to overcome these problems and can make a valuable difference to individual well-being. Ordinary people have extraordinary stories to tell about who they were, who they are now, who they want to be and the difficulties they may face.
Life story work enables us to see people as individuals in the context of their relationships with others, thus preserving their unique identity and enabling their rights to be respected and valued.
What have other family carers said about the course?
As you can see from the following comments, family carers have not only enjoyed the programme, but also felt that is has made a significant difference in their lives:
"Life story work is life changing. My Mum has come back to me as the Mum I know and love. We should talk to our Mums and partners about their hopes and dreams. I've never given that any thought; only thought about the present and supporting Dad. It never occurred to me that Mum may have dreams and hopes. I can see and feel the difference it's made in my relationship with Mum. I think it will be great for grandchildren getting more involved. They were cutting her out of conversations but now she's back in the loop where she belongs".
"My approach to S (husband) has changed – focus on positives. Now I've learned more about him I didn't know from his childhood and it's brought us closer together. Our relationship had started to suffer. Deeper relationship developed".
"It's seeing the person rather than the illness. It's brought a lot of emotions – good & bad. Something to do together, we're both eager. It's important it carries on – when he's cared for by others".
"I'd been doing family history for about 3 years but I realised how different this was – less factual and more emotional. I involved Mum in family history but realised I was not asking the right questions. Through life story work I've learned more about Mum & her feelings so a different conversation. The Day 1 training changed my approach. Without this it wouldn't have been Mum's life. It gave me confidence to explore Mum's feeling".
What will it cost?
It's free to you! The programme has been kindly funded by the The Big Lottery (Awards for All) fund. We'll also provide tea, coffee and lunch in a comfortable venue.
How long is the course?
The programme is held over two days (from 10.00am to 3.30pm), about four weeks apart, so you get the chance to try out some of the things you'll have learned on the first day and share your experiences with other carers on the second day. If you are a former carer can you identify a person with dementia who you can work with, perhaps with their family, to start their life story?
When will the course be held?
The course will be held at the Breckfield Centre, Breckfield Pl, Liverpool L5 4NH
Programme One runs on 26th May and 20th June
Programme Two runs on 7th June and 23rd June
Who will deliver the programme?
The programme is delivered by staff from the Life Story Network (CIC) who are skilled and experienced in life story work and the needs of family carers. The format of each day includes presentations, discussions and exercises including having fun! No prior knowledge or experience is necessary. The course is delivered in an environment where carers can feel safe in sharing their caring experience and where they can develop their own support networks with fellow course participants.
How do I sign up?
Booking a place is simple and easy, given the potential interest in this programme, we will accommodate people on a first come, first served basis. To book use the following contact details: