Dennis is a Dementia Wellbeing Support Worker with Carers Support West Sussex. Here he writes about what its like setting up one of our dementia awareness courses.
Right, I’ve been asked to do a four-week dementia awareness workshop, but where?
Sort venue with suitable dates available and get it agreed in writing. Hopefully with a few months in hand which gives times for planned advertising.
Now have a word with Liz, who designs some of our wonderful posters.
Let’s make out a booking list and then we can spread the word and get colleagues to book carers onto the course. It really does become a team exercise.
Now, how much script writing do I have to do? Is there anything on the shelf? I’m not reinventing the wheel after all! And am I going to do all the presenting, ‘God help the attendees listening to my dulcet tones for four sessions’. No, a guest speaker or a shared session is the way to go.
Well some previous scripts can be found, anyway. It’s not MY style so a tweak here, tweak there and it sounds a bit more like me. Oh dear, some might say!
Right, here’s the plan:
Week 1 – What is dementia. Let’s lay a few myths.
Week 2 – How Carers Support West Sussex can help – our services for carers – a good spot to share with a colleague.
Week 3 – Dementia friendly design in the home – not too many Powerpoint slides. You know what they say.
Week 4 – I’ve had enough of presenting. Time for a solicitor to help me out. Part 4, legal matters.
That seems like a decent workshop now let me think about spreading the word. Now I have something to advertise. Think internal and external to Carers Support West Sussex. My mailing list and contacts just gets longer and longer. I need help with the mailshot – more team work, thankfully.
Prepare for your course a good few weeks before it is due to begin. Then it has the chance of sounding fresh when delivered. Leave enough time in the previous couple of weeks to rehearse and look at the material you have. A script, Powerpoint / handouts all done, that MUST be it. Oops, I guess refreshments are called for; let’s diary in time for a quick shop. Now, this time, that MUST be it. Oops yet again, remember to print off feedback forms. CSWS does love it’s analysis and feedback.
It’s all done. Now’s the time for the doubts to creep in. Will they come? Do I have a spare computer? Hope none of the speakers are ill? Is this normal?
I wonder where all those previous feedback forms are stored? Ah yes, the great recycling paper storage cupboard in the sky!
A good few weeks work in the life of a workshop presenter.
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