A new initiative in Keynsham is hoping those who are living with dementia will be able to attend a shorter church service to follow their faith.
A member of St Dunstan’s church, Keynsham, Barbara Outhwaite came up with the idea of providing a short twenty minute service on a Sunday afternoon so that Christians, or indeed anyone living with dementia could attend without committing an hour or so to a full service and any issues that it might cause them.
Barbara told us “People living with Dementia and older people have never been forgotten by the people of Keynsham and Saltford. Churches Together in Keynsham & Saltford (CTKS) has long had a dedicated team of people who hold Christian services inside the care homes. What is new in what I am doing is to give Dementia sufferers the opportunity to experience a service inside a church.”
Supported by CTKS, she reached out to the Keynsham and Saltford Dementia Action Alliance (K&SDAA) for their support and involvement also and her request was immediately answered.
Chairman of K&SDAA Alan Hale told us “Receiving Barbara’s request was great because our aim is to make Keynsham & Saltford more dementia friendly and we can only do that with the help of the community and this church initiative, is a positive move to help and support those living with dementia. We are pleased to be supporting it. We would ask any other organisation or business that is interested in making Keynsham and Saltford more dementia friendly to contact us.”
The first service is being held at St Dunstan’s Church on Sunday October 6th at 3pm and will be followed by a tea in the church hall afterwards sponsored and organised by the K&SDAA. This first service will be a Harvest Festival Thanksgiving service.
On Sunday November 3rd the second service will be a Remembrance Service and on Sunday December 8th it will be a Christmas Carol Service both will start at 3pm and be followed by a tea.
Whilst primarily for those living with dementia or any type of memory problem and their carers and families, the services will be open to anyone wishing to support such a worthy venture to just turn up. For those living with dementia but not regular worshippers the aim is to give them the experience of being inside a church in an atmosphere of calm and is also supported by Outreach to Older People as part of the ongoing work of CTKS.
The church is ideal for this event as it has a good car park, and wheelchair access into the church and with toilet facilities for the disabled in the adjacent church hall.
More information can be obtained by contacting us through the website or speaking to Alan Hale – Mobile: 07776493221 Landline: 0117 9837923.