12
June
2018
|
15:17
Europe/London

E.ON’s Dementia Friends boost relationship with Alzheimer’s Society in Bedford

I think the Dementia Friends initiative is vital because it helps people to understand the different types of dementia that exist and how you can offer support to those affected, whether it’s me talking to my Grandad or my colleagues now in their conversations with customers.
Samantha French, Team Manager at E.ON

E.ON’s Dementia Friends boost relationship with Alzheimer’s Society in Bedford

Customer Service Advisers working for E.ON at its Caxton Road office in Bedford have become Dementia Friends after taking part in awareness and advice training developed for them by the charity Alzheimer’s Society.

Alzheimer’s Society has been E.ON’s official charity since 2016, and the partnership was recently extended to run until at least 2020. As part of its work together, E.ON has pledged to offer all of its 9,400 UK employees – around 500 of whom work in Bedford – the opportunity to attend an information session and become a Dementia Friend. This Alzheimer’s Society programme helps people to learn more about dementia and the small ways they can help others living with the condition.

E.ON’s adoption of the Dementia Friends initiative for its own employees follows its funding of research into how energy companies can help people with dementia and their carers. The ‘Switch on to Dementia’ research, available here, was funded by E.ON and conducted by Alzheimer’s Society. One of its recommendations was around ensuring that staff working with vulnerable customers have undergone appropriate training.

 

Samantha French is a Team Manager for E.ON at Bedford and one of those who volunteered to lead the Dementia Friends sessions for colleagues. She said: “I was a Dementia Friend before I started working for E.ON so I knew all about the programme, and I jumped at the chance to share this understanding with my colleagues.

“My Grandad was diagnosed around 2013 and now lives in a care home for those with dementia. He finds it hard to communicate and hasn’t known my name for at least three years. I’m terribly sad that he won’t understand what’s going on when he watches me get married later this year.

“I remember the amazing man that he used to be, ex-army, taking part in his grandchildren’s sports days, maintaining a beautiful garden and interested in technology and the latest gadgets. I think the Dementia Friends initiative is vital because it helps people to understand the different types of dementia that exist and how you can offer support to those affected, whether it’s me talking to my Grandad or my colleagues now in their conversations with customers.”

Tina Kierman, Operations Manager for Alzheimer’s Society in Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire, said: “We really value our relationship with E.ON, both in terms of the money being fundraised by employees and donated by the company and its commitment to the Dementia Friends programme.

“The more Dementia Friends there are, the more awareness about dementia will exist and more people will be taking actions to support those living with the condition. These new Dementia Friends at E.ON in Bedford can use their understanding at home and at work, to make life easier for all those affected by the condition.”

Visit eonenergy.com/charity for more information about E.ON’s partnership with Alzheimer’s Society.

For more information about E.ON and its products, services and solutions, visit eonenergy.com.

 

Ends

 

Notes to editors

Photo shows some of E.ON’s new Bedford-based Dementia Friends.

For more information contact:

Jane Branscombe, 07921 491159, Jane.branscombe@eon-uk.com

Naomi Troy, 07894 515169, Naomi.troy@eon-uk.com

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