Jacqui Cannon – Join Dementia Research Champion
A vital part of Join Dementia Research is our network of Champions who promote and publicise the service in their local area.
The Champions are made up of people from around the UK, with and without memory problems, who care about dementia research, and want to play a role in accelerating progress.
One of these Champions is Lewy Body Society CEO, Jacqui Cannon. Jacqui, who is based in North West England, has been a Join Dementia Research Champion since March 2016 and has organised a range of activities to help spread the word and to encourage people to sign up and get involved in dementia research.
We caught up with Jacqui to hear more about what she has been up to:
World Mental Health Day
“I work closely with a number of occupational therapists from my local health authority in Wigan and they asked me if I would like to have a stand at this event to promote Join Dementia Research.
The event attracted a range of healthcare professionals from across the North West region and generated a lot of interest from people wanting to know more about Join Dementia Research and how to get involved. It is always good to engage with these healthcare professionals as it means that if they become interested and engaged with Join Dementia Research, they are then in a great position to encourage their patients and stakeholders to get involved too!”
Wigan Tesco Extra Community Space
Jacqui is also involved in promoting Join Dementia Research to the wider public within her community. One of the best examples of this is the work she has recently undertaken at the ‘Community Space’ at her local Tesco store.
“The Tesco Extra in Wigan has a great initiative called the ‘Community Space’. This is a large room in which a chosen local charity or community organisation can use for the day to help promote and raise awareness of their group.
I have used this facility a few times to promote Join Dementia Research and each time has been a great success. I usually man a stand between the hours of 10 – 4 and the local community are always very interested to learn about Join Dementia Research. Once they have learnt about the service and how easy it is to get involved in studies in their area, they are always extremely positive in their feedback. There are always a lot of leaflets given away at these events and it is a great way to get the word out to people that may not have ever thought about getting involved in dementia research otherwise.”
In addition to directly promoting the Join Dementia Research service in her area, Jacqui has also been involved in the creation of a brand new cafe, specifically designed to cater for those with a dementia diagnosis.
“I helped to produce a bid to secure £3,500 funding for the first year from Wigan Council for a community café that will be dementia friendly for the areas of Poolstock, Worsley Mesnes and Goose Green.
We launched in mid-October and have run a number of sessions since. The café is so much more than a café though, it is a passport to a range of dementia-related activities within a local network.
Lifelines Café also features range of Join Dementia Research materials and allows me to discuss the service with a different kind of audience – those already diagnosed with dementia but not yet involved in research.”
We would like to say a big thank you to Jacqui and all of our Join Dementia Research Champions. The role of the Champions is crucial to Join Dementia Research. Their work in promoting the service throughout their local areas to generate interest and sign-ups is invaluable.
If you are interested in becoming a Join Dementia Research Champion, you can find out more on how to get involved here.