Following the Reading Agency launch of the Reading Well Books on Prescription Dementia Collection on Monday 26 January, libraries across the three boroughs gave community and health partners, as well as members of the public, the chance to find out about our Reading Well initiatives, with collection launches at five libraries.
The fourth launch took place at Hammersmith Library on 11 February; partners attending included the Stroke Association and Advocacy Plus, who ran a conversation café during the event. Conversation cafés are run by volunteers who offer members of the public tea, coffee and homemade cake and engage them in conversations around mental health. Diane Sherlock gave a talk and a reading of her poems and Freya, an artist who worked on the Remembering Together Project, set up the display.
The final launch was at Fulham Library on 13 February. This was a tea and scones occasion with a member of the discussion panel appearing with jam and clotted cream! Carers and other members of the public looked at the books and had an absorbing and lively conversation with Diane Sherlock. Author and playwright Nell Dunn attended the group and Library Manager Richard Grant and members of staff joined in, as well as the enthusiastic regular crochet group at Fulham Library.
Five different launches in different libraries in the three boroughs, only made possible by joint working with library staff and health and community partners.
Very warm thanks to Ann, Mark, Neil and Celia at Hammersmith and Richard and Peter at Fulham and all colleagues! Thanks to Diane Sherlock and Nell Dunn who donated their time and to Kathryn and Freya from Westminster Arts. Thanks to the Stroke Association who donate their time and resources to help prevent vascular dementia by preventing stroke.
Libraries are doing their bit for Dementia. If you would like to join the Dementia Alliance, contact Helen.ODonovan@alzheimers.org.uk.