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Diane and Josie’s story

Diane was diagnosed with early-onset dementia before she was 60. Now, at 69 years old, she lives in warden-controlled accommodation in St Osyth but can’t socialise as her behaviour is difficult for others to understand.

Diane struggles with concentration, memory loss and lives a disorganised lifestyle. Before the pandemic, she spent most of her time alone in her flat. Activities were available and organised for other tenants, but Diane didn’t attend because she felt uninvited.

Diane was referred to us by the Alzheimers’ Society and we quickly matched Diane with our dementia volunteer friend Josie.

The pandemic made contact difficult at first because Diane relies on facial recognition. However, Josie persevered and kept up the calls and contact.

Diane and Josie now meet up regularly and often go to a café for a drink. Josie has also empowered Diane to engage with other tenants and has now started to attend activities.

Our befriending co-ordinator said “Josie is extremely compassionate and cares about Diane’s needs. She has helped stimulate Diane socially and they regularly catch up and organise Diane’s week, so she feels safe and secure.”

“Diane lost confidence during the pandemic, and this negatively impacted her health and happiness. There is still much to be done to rebuild her confidence but I’m confident, together we can get there.”

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