After surveying members to find out what they wanted the NDAA to campaign on, the unanimous decision was post-diagnostic support for people from seldom heard groups. In autumn 2017 we launched From Seldom Heard to Seen and Heard, a campaign bringing members together for improved outcomes for people living with dementia and their carers who come from seldom heard groups. We have mainly focused on the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender + (LGBT+) community, people with learning disabilities, and the prison population. We have also been keen to include other seldom heard groups throughout the campaign.
Why is this important?
People from seldom heard groups face barriers to accessing good health and social care, which at times fails to meet their needs. Challenges can include a lack of awareness and cultural understanding across health and social care settings. This problem has become more acute as public service budgets have been cut. We asked people to pledge to take action and collaborate with us on the following campaign objectives:
● Raise awareness of the challenges faced by people with dementia from seldom heard groups.
● Influence system-wide change.
● Bring about organisational change by implementing NDAA recommendations.
We set about researching dementia and learning disabilities, dementia within prisons, and dementia within the LGBT+ community. We interviewed experts, spoke with people affected by dementia, and read about existing research in these three areas. This culminated in three roundtables, where experts and people with dementia discussed key issues and formed a set of recommendations. Lastly, we held an event to launch our findings and key recommendations. This saw a panel of people affected by dementia from seldom heard groups discuss their experiences and talk about what they wanted society to do differently to ensure that they are properly supported. In addition, representatives from nine seldom heard groups ran discussions on their area of expertise and again, what society should consider in regards to supporting them.
We have now launched a report on From Seldom Heard to Seen and Heard, setting out what we have achieved over the three years.Read the report here