Posted on: Thursday 17 January 2019
Nationwide Building Society in Pontypool is one of the latest organisations in Torfaen to gain their ‘Working Towards being Dementia Friendly’ status.
The branch is committed to helping support customers living with dementia and on Friday 11 January, Lynne Neagle AM presented the building society with a Dementia Friends award on behalf of the Alzheimers Society.
Torfaens Council's Greater Gwent Health, Social Care and Wellbeing Partnership Officer, Natasha Harris, provided Dementia Awareness training to all staff at the Nationwide branch in Pontypool and is supporting with any future training needs and events. The training gives an insight into what it is like to live with dementia and how people can be supported to live well and independently.
Torfaen AM Lynne Neagle said: "I am really pleased that the Nationwide Building Society in Pontypool has taken the time and effort to put its staff through the Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Friends training programme. Access to banking is vital for everyone and the training will enable Nationwide’s staff to deal with people with dementia in a more sympathetic and understanding way.
I am delighted that more and more schools and businesses in Torfaen are completing the training – we really are well on the way to a dementia friendly Torfaen and I believe that will be a kinder Torfaen for everyone."
Pontypool branch Manager Darren Lewis has since trained as a Dementia Friends Champion and is able to support further awareness sessions throughout the organisation in Gwent. As a result, Nationwide is looking to team up with partner agencies including Gwent Police to provide sessions supporting financial independence and fraud awareness.
Darren said, "Becoming a dementia friendly branch is important to us at Nationwide, we want to ensure that we can provide support to those affected by dementia. Members of the team have faced the difficulties of dealing with dementia first hand with family members and friends.
We know the challenges ahead for both families and the individuals can be difficult but we would like to ease this a much as possible for our customers, by understanding the affects Dementia can have on the individual and their finances."
Other Nationwide branches in Cwmbran and Monmouthshire are also set to gain their accreditations with support being provided through the Greater Gwent Health team. Both branches will be making improvements to how they support people living with dementia.
Many other organisations are coming forward in Torfaen to develop Dementia Friendly Communities and provide more understanding and support for people living with dementia, their families and their carers.
For further information on Dementia Friendly Communities and how you can help please, contact Natasha Harris on 01495 761691.