A Sheffield-based care home worker is taking part in a 5k Alzheimer’s Memory Walk in March, in honour of her mother and residents at Broomcroft House Bupa Care Home, living with the disease.
As part of her efforts, Joanna Macgregor hopes to raise £200 for Alzheimer's Society to help make a difference to the lives of those affected by dementia. Her goal is to raise awareness and understanding of Alzheimer’s and how we can work towards a dementia free future.
Joanna Macgregor is the Activities Coordinator at Bupa’s Broomcroft House and has worked there for two years. Having worked as a primary school teaching assistant for eight years, she changed career paths in 2017, after her mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, aged 65. Joanna wanted to find a new role where she could learn how to support the diagnosis and understand the disease.
When asked about her upcoming Memory Walk, Joanna said: “I want to help raise money for a cause that is very close to my heart. I know first-hand how challenging the disease can be for both patents and those around them. After my mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s I wanted to change my career path to support her, and now I am able to help many people living with this disease every day.
“We can all do our best to offer support and assistance, but more research needs to be done so that less people have to go through this heartache, so any donations would mean the world.”
Joanna’s role at Broomcroft House is to plan activities for the residents, to keep them active, healthy and entertained. She often plans mentally stimulating games and events, such as puzzles, art classes, and word games, which particularly helps those living with dementia. Since working with older people, she has come to learn more about those living with the disease and how to incorporate their needs and personal interests into her plans.
Joanna said: “If the last four years working in elderly care has taught me anything, it is that a person is not defined by their dementia. In my role, I am able to build strong relationships with our residents and get to know all about their hobbies, families and life before moving to the home. Because of this, I can adapt activities to make them more inclusive and support everyone’s needs. For example, if we are doing an art project, I will ensure I have a wide range of sensory colours, textures and materials for dementia patients to explore.”
Luke Owens, Home Manager at Broomcroft House Bupa Care Home, said: “Joanna is an incredibly strong individual, and we are very proud of her for taking on this challenge. It is clear how passionate she is about making a positive difference and how much she cares for the residents at our home.
“I’d like to encourage anyone who is inspired by her efforts to please donate, as it really could change lives for those in need.”
Anyone looking to donate to Joanna’s cause can do so by visiting: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/mw578535
Broomcroft House Bupa Care Home is situated in Sheffield and welcomes residents in need of care, including those living with dementia, Parkinson’s, and Huntington’s. For further information, please visit https://www.bupa.co.uk/care-services/care-homes/broomcroft-house-sheffield