Monday 7th September 2020, was the 75th Parson Cross Forum, online Memory Cafe since we last met face-to-face on 17th March 2020.
The online Memory Cafes, started on the 20th March 2020 and have continued 3 mornings a week with an extra one for VE Day.
They were set up by and at the suggestion of a person living with Dementia and the agenda for each Cafe is chosen by the members.
Parson Cross Forum is one of the leading charities in the North of Sheffield, they offer support to the whole community, but specialise in working with older people and families living with Dementia.
As a small independent charity, they work hard to raise their own funds via room hire and the delivery of activities and services, as well as income from grants and donations.
During this time of crisis, they have gone above and beyond what such a small Charity could be expected to do to support their community including people living with Dementia and their families.
They are currently working 5 days per week and their phone lines are open from 9am until 8pm for our community.
As well as dealing with everyday work, they are currently supporting more than 100 people, trying to make sure they stay connected to their community whilst living in isolation, they are doing this via methods including:
Socially distanced delivery of Activity Packs every 3 weeks to members plus 3 Care Homes and to check in on people face to face (from a safe distance)
3 online Memory Cafes a week, involving up to 35 people, including Chairobics: (Those unable to use Technology are contacted, supported and kept up to date)
Even on VE Day, they had an extra Cafe where they delivered an Extra Pack
and Afternoon Tea
including specially made VE Day Muffins
our Local Councillor holding her weekly Surgery during the Monday online Cafe
Reminiscence, Bingo & QuizzesHistory of Sheffield
Weekly phone calls to those that cannot/are unwilling to access the online Memory Cafe’s on Zoom
Singing for the Soul Group on Zoom
And they have recently started a “Mens Talk” Group led by Jason Cotton
“Men-Talk is a safe, place for Men to talk openly about the things which matter most. Whether you wish to join and support other chaps, fancy a chat about the things we like to talk about, simply listen or share something really important and get it off your chest, either way – it all helps us to feel good.Improving your Mental, Physical and Emotional wellbeing is really important for us all, and having a chinwag, spending time in good company, sharing life experiences, enjoying a laugh and having an opportunity to talk about anything you feel you need to say, is what Men-Talk is all about.People often say that Men don’t talk. I prefer to say that Men don’t talk enough.. With just #1 rule we ask that ‘everything that’s said in the room, stays in the room’ – to ensure confidentiality.” – Jason Cotton
Importantly, keeping everyone connected and supported at this difficult time. They making over 100 calls a week to members, to find out how people are coping, if they need any support and how their mental health is.
They are also dealing with food and food-bank requests and people worried about their neighbours. Thanks to their supporters, they have been able to deliver over 100 parcels to their older residents including parcels to our local nursing homes who usually access our services up to 3 time per week.
As a small charity, every single penny donated will make a real and significant difference to the support they can offer our community and help to look after the most vulnerable people they support.. Unsurprisingly, they are finalists for the National Diversity Awards 2020
And nominated for the 11th National Dementia Care Awards
As the lockdown is easing for some, many of older and vulnerable people will still need to stay in isolation, or chose not to risk going out of their homes unless absolutely necessary, so they need to continue to be there for them and will continue to support everyone after we all return to some sort of normal..
Parson Cross Forum is supporting older and vulnerable people the best way they can and as a small independent charity, solely responsible for raising our own funds, they are asking you for your continued support and donations during these difficult times. This will allow them to be there to continue to provide a lifeline for the most vulnerable members including those living with Dementia.
Due to Covid-19, they have now lost all of the income they usually generate themselves.
I have a Facebook donation page which you could kindly donate to.You can help to support their appeal to raise £1,000+, so they can continue to offer their services to our community and especially those who are isolated or living with Dementia during this time and for the future.
Please Donate today and help the community of Parson Cross and the wider Sheffield UK community via this link:
If you live in Sheffield with or supporting someone living with Dementia and think the Cfae might be of benefit, contact Louise Ashmore on 0114 327 9727