Dementia affects 850,000 people in the UK, and with the number currently predicted to rise to more than 1 million by 2025, it’s time to start shouting about it. Currently there are no treatments to stop or even slow down the process of the disease, so The Perfume Shop is here to raise as money and awareness…
Celebs have got involved, too. Yep – actress Vicky McClure and TV personality Russell Grant are calling on people of all ages to take part in a virtual Running Down Dementia challenge – where they will run 100km to raise £100 towards dementia research.
Russell Grant, whose grandmother developed Alzheimer’s disease, is a passionate supporter of the charity. ‘Having cared for my nan,’ says Russell, ‘I’ve seen what dementia can do, and, of course, it makes me fearful of developing it myself,’ he says. ‘She got the thin end of the wedge with Alzheimer’s, as she lost her power of speech. All she could manage was incoherent noises. The hardest part was not knowing what she was thinking. The fear for me is wondering who’s going to be around to look after me if I get it. Not everybody is going to be as caring as my mum and I have been.’
Vicky also lost her grandmother to dementia in 2015. ‘Watching someone you love slowly deteriorating from a disease you have no control over is heartbreaking. The hardest part was when my grandmother stopped recognising me,’ Vicky says. ‘She used to scream a lot, through frustration, as she knew what she wanted to say, but the words just wouldn’t come out.’
So how will you be supporting National Dementia Awareness Week? Here’s how Sonia from #TEAMTPS is raising awareness…
Sonia Zaibar, Deputy Manager at Birmingham Fort
‘We will be raising awareness in store by asking customers for a 25p donation with every purchase or when gift wrapping for them. With the rest of the staff, I’ll be making a hamper full of 25 goodies to use in a raffle. Raffle tickets will be £5. The hamper will include a mixture of products, some donated by staff members. Multiple tickets can be purchased.’