Warwick Medical School students hope to make a difference in the community by opening a dementia café in a popular residential area of Leamington.
Memory Lane café will take place on Wednesdays from 1pm – 3pm at the Sydni Centre from Wednesday 22 March, providing a friendly space for older people with memory loss, to chat, undertake a range of activities and have some refreshments.
The dementia café project is led by medical students Rebecca Briggs and Lucas Snow and supported by a whole raft of fellow students, alongside Director of Medical Studies Dr Kate Owen. The idea came from an interest in exploring social prescribing within medicine and the benefits it can bring to individuals and the community. The idea is that by connecting people to activities, groups, and services in their community it will meet their practical, social and emotional needs that affect their health and wellbeing.
Rebecca said, “We secured funds from the Warwick Institute of Engagement to work with the Sydni centre to be able to put on and market these events. With the cost-of-living crisis many older people are struggling with their bills and so we are hoping to provide a warm, welcoming space for them to come and connect with other members of their community.
There will be different activities each week which people can choose to do or just enjoy being around others. And of course, there will be refreshments! Although, we are aiming to attract those with memory loss, visitors will not need a formal diagnosis and are encouraged to bring family members or carers with them. It is very informal.”
Kate Owen, Director of Medical Studies said. “I am delighted that we have managed to get this project off the ground. Being able to offer activities like this is really important for a number of reasons. It helps to tackle loneliness, enables people to interact with those who have similar challenges and experiences, they can share their memories and meet new people. The aim is that the café will help to contribute to improving the mental health of this part of the community in Leamington. We are hoping that in time local GPs and care homes will get to know about what we are offering and encourage participation and we will make a real impact.”
The Sydni Centre
Wednesday 22 March 2023
We welcome older adults in the community with memory loss as well as their carers and those who may be lonely and fancy a chat.
Optional activities will be available and free refreshments provided!