Waitrose staff take part in dementia session to learn more about the disease

Waitrose partners who took part in the training with Luisa Castle
Waitrose partners who took part in the training with Luisa Castle
  • Team learn more about the disease to help customers
  • Volunteers needed for this year’s Portsmouth Memory Walk
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In total, eight shop-floor assistants from the Locks Heath branch took part in a session to learn about dementia.

It’s the first time our store has done anything like this and we found it very informative and it was a very positive session

Tina Kennedy, fruit and vegetables specialist

The session was delivered by Hampshire group Home Instead Senior Care, which provides at-home care for sufferers of dementia.

Tina Kennedy, fruit and vegetable specialist, said: ‘It’s the first time our store has done anything like this and we found it very informative and it was a positive session.

‘It made us aware of how the disease can affect someone.

‘If a customer comes in our store, we are now more aware of what to look out for and how we can help.

‘The key is to think of the moment that person is in and help them as much as possible.’

Luisa Castle, co-owner of Home Instead, and a dementia champion, led the educational workshop.

She said: ‘I enjoyed delivering the session at Waitrose for the first time. They were an eager group and I hope to be able to return to repeat the session to more staff in the future.

‘A lot of the shop-floor staff at Waitrose are young adults working part time or on zero-hour contracts, so the session gave me the ability to educate them on a terrible disease which they most likely have never had to think about before.

‘It enabled them to have a better understanding of their customers who might suffer the disease, and better equip them to handling it.’

n There’s still time to sign up as either a participant or volunteer for this year’s Portsmouth Memory Walk.

Run by the Alzheimer’s Society, the event takes place on Saturday, September 26, and people can choose a 3k or 10k route.

Volunteers to help with marshalling to registration, manning fundraising stalls and giving out medals, are also needed between 9am and 3pm.

The walk at Castle Field in Southsea starts at 11am.

To find out more about volunteering at Portsmouth Memory Walk, call Natalie Bettinson on (023) 9282 1430 or to register online, visit memorywalk.org.uk.