Every year in Gibraltar we work together to raise awareness about Dementia during the month of September with World Alzheimer’s Day falling on the 21st September.
This year’s theme for World Alzheimer’s Month 2023 is ‘Never too early, never too late’.
The ‘Never too early, never too late’ campaign aims to underscore the pivotal role of identifying risk factors and adopting proactive risk reduction measures to delay, and potentially even prevent, the onset of Dementia. This includes ongoing risk reduction strategies for individuals who have already received a diagnosis.
All the following need attention to manage the risk factors associated with Dementia and help slow progression and manage the condition.
- Staying physically active
- Eating Healthily
- Basic Health checks and management of underlying conditions g. hearing, blood pressure and blood sugar
- Staying socially engaged, don’t become socially isolated
- Managing depression
- Avoiding head injuries including protecting your head when involved in high risk sports
- Reducing Air Pollution
- Not starting smoking or quitting if you smoke
- Not drinking excessively
- Keeping a healthy weight
- Educating the community especially young people about these risk factors and raising awareness
Elderly Residential Services have kick started this year’s Dementia Awareness Month with a Purple Post Box Topper Campaign.
The project came about as the result of a light-hearted comment during an informal chat. The collaboration between ERS, Royal Gibraltar Post Office, Knit Gibraltar, and members of the local community over the last two months has been amazing with 100% commitment by all of those who have been involved in this voluntary campaign. This campaign has seen this wonderful Dementia Awareness initiative come to fruition.
The toppers were placed late last night to maximise the impact when Gibraltar woke up this morning.
The GHA would like to thank the Hon Minister Daryanani MP and the Gibraltar Post Office Staff for their support in enabling us to use the post boxes to raise awareness this month showing a collaboration between Government Departments for raising awareness in the Gibraltar community.
There are 28 toppers all around Gibraltar for the local community and visitors to enjoy. Please see the map which shows where they are and who has made them. The GHA encourage the public to please take photographs with the toppers and if they wish share them on social media using the hash tag #NeverTooEarly #NeverTooLate #ReduceRiskNow so that we can play our part is raising awareness of Dementia this month.
Minister Daryanani said: ‘I am delighted to play a small part in supporting this project. Dementia is a difficult condition to live with for the patients and their families. As a Government, we are fully committed to making Gibraltar as Dementia friendly as possible. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the GHA and GADS for the fabulous work they do in raising awareness. For me, it is a privilege to be allowed to do my bit too’.
Director General, Professor Patrick Geoghegan OBE said: ‘I take the opportunity to thank all knitters who have voluntary undertaken this project during the summer months. Unfortunately, many have been diagnosed with Dementia and we all need to raise awareness and assist both patients and their families during this difficult journey. To help us achieve this objective and as promised the GHA have appointed Karen Truman as our Dementia Coordinator, Karen’s role is to support this client group and their families’.