A dementia carers support course in Cullybackey will soon be taking place over 4 consecutive Wednesday evenings. This gives people living in Cullybackey, who are caring for someone with dementia, an opportunity to learn more about the condition and how it affects people. This series of free courses are being run by Alzheimer’s Society throughout the Northern Trust area.

Dementia Carers Support Course in Cullybackey

These four, weekly, 2 hour sessions offer the chance to learn more about the condition and how it affects the individual. They are being held at –

Dr John McKelvey Community Centre, Cullybackey 6:30pm- 8:30pm

They start on Wednesday 30th Aug and continue on Wed 6th Sept, Wed 13th Sept, Wed 20th Sept.

There are more than 20,000 people in Northern Ireland living with dementia, including 1350 in the Ballymena and Antrim area. Dementia is a progressive, terminal condition for which there is not yet a cure, but with the right support people can live well. This course enables people who care for a family member or friend with dementia to provide that support, but also provides information and advice about looking after themselves.

The courses, which are funded by Public Health Agency, aim to help carers understand more about the condition and its symptoms, including the sort of behaviours that people may display which can at times be challenging. By understanding more about dementia the courses help people to cope better with caring for the individual.

The four week Training for Informal Caregiver course covers dementia symptoms, legal issues, managing finances, carer wellbeing and self-care, and available services. Courses are offered throughout the Northern Trust area, and can also be arrange for small groups at organisations. An ‘informal carer’ is anyone who provides unpaid care or support for a person, however sporadically. This could be a family member, friend, neighbour or acquaintance.

Dementia Carers Support Course in Cullybackey

Left to right – Helen Young Volunteer, Mandy McVey, Marleen O’Brien, Margaret Brown, Honor Crawford & Sarah McLaughlin Training Facilitator.

Alzheimer’s Society trainer, Sarah McLaughlin said:

“Relatives of people with dementia often say that it can be really frustrating when someone doesn’t want to change their clothes, have a shower or sleep at night, especially if the person doesn’t accept that there is anything wrong with them.

“Understanding how the person is trying to make sense of the world, and how they feel about the losses they are experiencing, can help relatives to be more patient and cope better. This, in turn, helps the person with dementia to be more content.

“The courses will also help people to better understand the changes that occur as dementia progresses. There will be the opportunity for carers to discuss the difficulties they face and what tactics work for them. We also look at legal issues, planning for the future & managing finances. They also look at how a person caring for someone with dementia can look after their own wellbeing.

“Our final session ensures people know what services are available in their local area. Whether it’s Alzheimer’s Society services such as Dementia Support Workers. Also for the statutory services or services from other voluntary sector organisations,”

Do you live in the Cullybackey area and are an informal caregiver to someone living with dementia? Alzheimer’s Society are running a Dementia Carers Support Course in Cullybackey for you!

Below are comments from people who have attended the training.

‘I feel 100% more capable to deal with my future now. The course has taken away a lot of the fear of the unknown. I know I can refer to all the leaflets and notes when I am dealing with difficult behaviour as it happens. The trainer’s good solid advice and meeting other carer’s has been completely invaluable.’ Patricia – Cullybackey

‘The course has been invaluable to myself and my husband, I definitely have more understanding of my mum’s different behaviours and hopefully will have more patience and understanding of what she is thinking.’ Christine – Cullybackey

For more information  or book a place on one of the local courses contact 028 90 387 480. You can also e-mail NICaregiver.Training@alzheimers.org.uk

Alzheimer’s Society is here for anyone affected by dementia. The charity provides information and support. To find out more call the National Dementia Helpline on 0300 222 1122 or visit their website.