Walking With Your Head Held High For Dementia UK

Lauren Stevens: Dementia UK fundraiserOur very own Community Fundraising Assistant, Lauren, will be taking on the 25km South Coast Challenge this year, along with a team of her close friends and family to raise vital funds for Dementia UK

I decided to take on the South Coast Challenge as I wanted to set myself a new challenge to work toward, as well as raise money and awareness for a great cause. There’ll be six of us tackling the 25k, with only one other person from the group having done something like this before.

Dementia is something that’s close to my heart after my grandad was diagnosed with vascular dementia in 2011. I always remember my grandad being a strong and loyal family man with a love for motorbikes. No matter what, he’d be tinkering around with them in his garage. He had a great sense of humour and would always crack a Tommy Cooper joke… which my dad has now inherited!

However, dementia gradually took more of a hold over him. He’d find it difficult to follow conversations and began to lose his mobility. He had a few nasty falls and also picked up a bug. This meant that he was eventually hospitalised and then placed in a care home as it became too much for my Nan to look after him on her own.

My dad and his brother had to help my nan had to sort out the finances for the care home, and dealing with that, as well as things like power of attorney, was just completely overwhelming. This was on top of the emotional impact that the dementia was having on all of us.

To have a specialist dementia nurse who my nan or my dad, or even myself, could have spoken to at times when we felt lost, would have just been like a shining light at the end of a very dark tunnel. I know that there are so many families going through a similar experience and I want to raise awareness so more of these families know about the support Admiral Nurses and Dementia UK provide. That’s why my team and I are taking on this challenge for Dementia UK.

If you’re inspired by Lauren’s blog, here’s how you can get involved!