How did you hear about and get involved with Dementia Concern?

I heard about Dementia Concern when I was working within the voluntary sector in Ealing as the Ealing Community Network Partnerships Manager.  I met the former Director through that forum and was aware of the work of Dementia Concern.  About 10 years ago my father-in-law was diagnosed with dementia and my family supported him through his illness until he passed away in 2017 from complications arising from dementia.  I then saw the job advertisement whilst at my former CEO role in Westminster, and as I was now more familiar with dementia and also lived in Ealing, I thought that the role would be a good fit for me.

How has the charity changed throughout your time at the charity?

The charity had been in a period of change really since the passing of the founder, Frances English in 2011.  From that point, changes began to work their way through the organisation.  When I arrived on the scene in 2018, funding for the charity was diminishing.  Within my first week in role, the charity had 1/3rd of its income cut.  So, my last two years in the job as CEO, have basically been responding to how the charity could recover that £330,000 loss of funding per annum.  The charity has also had quite a few staff leave for various reasons, and this has been unsettling for some longer-term staff members.  The charity is also becoming more IT-based and has been reducing its paper-based recording methods.  This innovation has supported the charity whilst it was working through the COVID-19 period and most of the staff working from home.  The Volunteer Board has also had a whole new membership, as most of the previous Board Members had completed their term limits.

How do you see the charity developing in the future? 

I can see the charity reaching out to more people within the borough and increasing the proportion of people who are living with dementia being served by Dementia Concern.  I also see the charity’s offices becoming a Community Hub for those living with dementia and their carers.  

What is your favourite thing about Dementia Concern? 

I am pleased about the personalised care and direct help that the clients receive from our dedicated and supportive staff and the great feedback we receives from families.