Working with people living with dementia
We facilitate conversations with people living with dementia, carers, transport operator staff, academic researchers and more.
We spend time with groups of people affected by dementia in Scotland who are already meeting and supporting each other, primarily in Aberdeen, the Western Isles and East Lothian. We create safe, friendly spaces for conversations about getting out and about. We hear about challenges, questions, ideas and examples of existing support. You can read our approach to exploring mobility and try it out for yourself.
People have told us about a fear of falling on the bus as it pulls away, or losing the ability to handle money or buy a ticket online. We've heard that crossing the road is becoming more difficult, as is finding an appropriate toilet during a journey. People often talk of disabling products, services and environments.
We've heard about lots of challenges that tell us that:
- people lose their confidence to travel
- travel becomes an anxious time
- the many rules and systems in a complex world of transport are inconsistent and confusing
- the increasing move to online services may exclude some and begin to cause further inequalities
- eligibility for support and assistance (such as disabled parking and railcard discounts) is unclear or inconsistent
- the eventual need to stop driving due to a diagnosis of dementia can be a difficult transition
- a lack of awareness and understanding of the challenges of dementia can lead to poor service and inappropriate products and environments.
- peer support and group discussion can help to share and spread information about support that is most useful
We are also collecting examples of assistance that is already available. Group discussions often share information about national and locally available assistance and schemes such as:
- the Thistle Card and Thistle app (available on Android and IOS)
- Safe Journey cards
- Assisted travel on rail journeys
- Special Assistance in airports
- 'Please offer me a seat' badge and card scheme and Travel support card in London
- Local Taxi cards for discounted journeys
- discounted rail travel using
Group discussions are important forums to share experience and information about available support and to encourage peer-to-peer sharing of local solutions.