Dementia UK Volunteer Ambassador honoured as Unsung Hero

June 26, 2018
unsung hero award ceremony


Our Volunteer Ambassador, Sheila Wainwright, honoured for her work in raising awareness of dementia in Wakefield and beyond.

We are delighted to announce that Sheila Wainwright, a Dementia UK Volunteer Ambassador who has tirelessly raised awareness of Admiral Nurses over the past six years, has received an Unsung Hero Award. The Community Foundation Wakefield District, an independent charity which champions local causes, honoured a number of volunteers who have made a difference in Wakefield. The awards raise the profile of the voluntary sector and aim to make Wakefield a better place to live.

As a Volunteer Ambassador, Sheila plays an essential role in increasing understanding of the problems associated with dementia and the role of Admiral Nurses in providing unique dementia experience and expertise.

For six years, Sheila has been giving talks to raise an understanding of dementia. Through her campaigning and fundraising in local rotary clubs, other community groups and in the local community, Sheila has built up incredible awareness of the work we do. Her fundraising has also been instrumental in helping to set up three Admiral Nurse posts in Wakefield – two serving people in the community and one working in Wakefield Hospice.

An esteemed panel of Wakefield community and business figures recognised Sheila’s achievements at a time when over 35% of people in the district are over 65 years old and more likely to live with the effects of dementia and social isolation. Over 200 people attended the awards dinner at the Unity Hall in Wakefield, hosted on behalf of the Community Foundation by Kate Hardcastle, a local retail guru, and with the Mayor and Mayoress of Wakefield in attendance.

Sheila said: “It’s an immense honour to receive this award. Ever since I campaigned to get Wakefield’s first Admiral Nurse, I have been continuing to raise awareness of the vital work of Admiral Nurses not just in Wakefield but in other parts of the UK too.

“I have experienced first-hand the devastating impact that dementia can have and an Admiral Nurse would have been a lifeline for me in these circumstances. In Wakefield alone, there are around 4,000 people diagnosed with dementia and around 1,000 living undiagnosed. There are only three Admiral Nurses in Wakefield which shows that there is still more work to be done”.

Dr. Hilda Hayo, CEO and Chief Admiral Nurse at Dementia UK commented: “Congratulations Sheila! From all of us here at Dementia UK, we can’t thank you enough for all the work you have done to help more families face dementia. We now have three Admiral Nurses supporting families in Wakefield which is making all the difference to hundreds of people”.

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