Jewish Care Rosh Hashanah Appeal recreating connections

28 Sep 2022

This Rosh Hashanah, Jewish Care is appealing to the community to donate funds for its vital support services for people living with dementia and their family carers. Specialist staff at Jewish Care understand the impact not only on those living with dementia, but also on their family, friends and carers too and provide stimulating and person-centred support in a nurturing environment for the community.

Around the Jewish festivals, the challenges for people living with dementia and their families can become more pronounced and expert staff at Jewish Care’s three specialist dementia day centres support clients living with dementia to participate in meaningful, stimulating activities and socialise in a Jewish environment where they can connect with Rosh Hashanah memories with apple and honey, honey cake and the sound of the shofar.

Alongside the dementia day centres, Jewish Care runs support groups for people living with dementia and their family carers, with specialist emotional and practical support for carers provided by the Family Carers Team who currently support 150 family carers. This can range from guidance on to how to manage the challenges of becoming a family carer, to understanding benefits they are entitled to and how to navigate the application system.

 Warren and Ruth attend Jewish Care’s Memory Way Café support group for people living with dementia and their family carers. Married for almost 59 years, they first met on a blind date 61 years ago. Warren started as a salesman at an electronics company where he worked for many years and became the Managing Director.

When Warren was diagnosed in 2019, Ruth called the Jewish Care Direct helpline and together the couple began to visit the Memory Way Café where they met and became friends with other couples who are in a similar situation.

At The Memory Way Café people living with dementia have opportunities to engage in activities run by specialist staff and experienced, dedicated volunteers, whilst at the same time offering respite to their family carers. Warren also regularly attends Jewish Care’s The Zalman & Ruchi Noé Centre for people living with dementia at Sandringham.   

Ruth explains how valuable the services are to them, saying, “It’s great the centre is here for Warren, as he can be among friends who are experiencing the same things that he is going through and has found real companionship. When Warren is at the centre, it gives me the time I need to be able to do the general everyday chores and also have some time for myself,” she explains, “and for Warren he gets the care he needs with like-minded people and together, we enjoy time spent at the Memory Way Café with friends.’

Jewish Care Director of Community Services, Volunteering and Social Work, Richard Shone, says, “For many people living with dementia and their families, festivals can stand as reminders of how much has changed since they received a diagnosis of dementia. Memories are often locked inside and our specialist staff are there to support people living with dementia to celebrate festivals, creating meaningful new experiences whilst reconnecting with positive moments from the past.

“Family and friends of people living with dementia often become carers and our specialist staff in our dementia day centres, support groups and Family Carers Team understand the impact that dementia has on their lives and are here to support them.

“Our services for people living with dementia and their families receive no government funding and as the cost to provide this specialised care continues to rise, we rely on the generosity of the community so that we can continue to support and care for people living with dementia and their families through our dementia services.”  

To donate to Jewish Care’s Rosh Hashanah appeal, call 020 8922 2600 or visit jewishcare.org/donate.

If you would like to learn more about Jewish Care’s services for people living with dementia, please visit jewishcare.org or call Jewish Care Direct helpline on 020 8922 2222.