Gwydir Shire Council is seeking expressions of interest from caring and compassionate community members who are interested in participating in the development of Gwydir Shire Council’s Ageing Strategy, and the development of Dementia Friendly Communities in Warialda and Bingara.
A dementia-friendly community is a place where people living with dementia are supported to live a high quality life with meaning, purpose and value, and where the whole community is aware and considerate of the needs of people with dementia. Likewise, an age-friendly community is a place where older people are valued, respected and actively engaged in their community. They can stay in touch with people they care about and find the services and support they need.
Age-friendly communities are more liveable for everyone. Gwydir Shire Council’s Deputy General Manager, Leeah Daley, advises the purpose of this committee is to support aged residents and people with dementia to be involved in activities and social events that provide meaning and purpose in their lives for as long as possible. “Through the creation of Aged and Dementia Friendly Communities we aim to tackle social isolation and stigma through education and awareness” said Mrs Daley.
There are many small changes that can be made in our communities to ensure we meet the needs of our elderly, and those living with dementia, such as adult education facilities that provide opportunities to support new learning, for example courses at tertiary institutions, TAFE, or learning a new language or instrument; volunteering and paid employment opportunities; awareness training for small businesses so staff understand dementia and know how to communicate effectively with people who have dementia; and memory cafes for people living with dementia and their families. Social groups such as choirs, walking groups, sporting clubs and groups that welcome elderly members and those living with dementia are also an effective way of ensuring these members of our community are welcomed and accepted, remain socially active, and make new friends.
To ensure the strategies meet the unique requirements of each community, two committees will be formed; one based in Warialda representing the north of the Shire, and the other in Bingara to cater for the needs of residents in the south of the Shire.
If you are interested in becoming a member of either committee please send your details to firstname.lastname@example.org or post your interest to Locked Bag 5, Bingara NSW 2404, before May 31st. If you require any further information on the scope of this Committee please contact Aged Care Services Manager, Sharon Baker at 02 6729 3051.