Dementia Dekh Baal – capturing the voices of South Asian Dementia Carers

‘Dementia Dekh Bhaal’ means ‘to care for dementia’ in Urdu

 

Tide’s pioneering dementia initiative in Rochdale ‘Dementia Dekh Bhaal has been a huge success, it was piloted in Rochdale and funded by the HMR-CCG. Its aim was to capture lived experiences of south Asian dementia carers on film, to design and deliver bespoke cultural competence training to front-line NHS and Council staff, and to instigate a grassroots campaign for change in health and social care sector.

‘They look after their own’ is a phrase some in the south Asian communities are only too familiar with. Family carers often struggle to care for a relative with dementia, but when you add cultural, social and sometimes practical barriers the task of carers becomes neigh impossible.

To dispel this myth, and to bring the issues raised by our south Asian carers to the attention of healthcare professionals and commissioners, Tide successfully delivered this innovative project which showcased what can be achieved when you put communities and families at the heart of family carers of people with dementia.

Carers do a fantastic job, saving the state £11 billion a year, but many say that they do not have the services and support they need, this situation is often increasingly fraught especially for groups who are seldom heard and often overlooked.

Shahid Mohammed, Dementia Dekh Bhaal’s Project Manager worked on the initiative with members of Rochdale’s South Asian community, people living with dementia, carers, voluntary sector organisations and the statutory sector to encourage meaningful engagement, consultation and development of support services.

Shahid said: “We know that dementia is projected to increase around seven-fold for Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) communities. These families present late [for support] with dementia, often carers are struggling to manage already complex situations and not having a word for dementia in community languages makes it really difficult to reach out and set up appropriate support mechanisms.”

“We have some fantastic carers across Rochdale, doing a brilliant job looking after loved ones. Anything that improves the help and support available to them should be welcomed and it was great to be given the opportunity to work on a pioneering and innovative project.”

The success of Dementia Dekh Bhaal hasn’t gone un-noticed, Dementia United have now given their commitment to support the expansion of the project and to roll it out across Greater Manchester.

For more information contact Shahid Mohammed on 07841 421157 or email shahid@lifestorynetwork.org.uk