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Haskins Garden Centre in Crawley has announced its continued support of Alzheimer’s Society until 2020. Haskins in Snowhill has been fundraising and raising awareness for the charity since January 2017 and now the popular garden centre has revealed its continued support over the coming years.
The garden centre has so far raised nearly £4,000 for the charity, with hopes of nearing the £10,000 mark by 2020.
Dave Lilly, general manager at Haskins Garden Centre in Snowhill, said: “Alzheimer’s Society is a great charity which is close to the hearts of many of our customers and also our staff. Many have been affected at some point by the challenges this debilitating disease has had on their friends and family.
“We are also working hard with the Society to become one of the first dementia-friendly garden centres in the area with our staff properly trained and capable of supporting any of our customers or family who have been diagnosed with dementia who come into shop with us. I’m looking forward to continuing our support well into the 2020’s and highlight this when we relaunch our newly developed centre.”
The centre is due to be redeveloped, with a temporary centre on the same site during 2019. The rebuild has had input from Alzheimer’s Society’s Crawley Forward Thinkers – a group of people living with dementia – to make the new centre more dementia-friendly, in terms of customer service and continued staff training.
There are more than 1,100 people living with dementia in Crawley, and more than 1,200 in the Tandridge area, and creating a dementia-friendly garden centre will help reduce stigma and make people feel confident, understood and supported to be a valuable part of society.
Members of the Crawley Forward Thinking Group, a group of people living well with dementia, visited Haskins Garden Centre in Snowhill during the summer to meet with the staff.
Grahame said: “Visiting Snowhill was a positive experience for people affected by dementia, and having such lovely staff at Snowhill made such a massive difference to this. A few changes with the signage to help people find their way around and Snowhill isn’t far off at all.”
Jess Hillicks, Alzheimer’s Society community fundraiser for Surrey and West Sussex, said: “We’re thrilled the Snowhill centre has chosen to support Alzheimer’s Society until 2020, with both fundraising and raising awareness of dementia. So far the centre has run fundraising quiz nights and bucket collections, as well as accommodating our Dementia Community Roadshow.
“It’s also great news that the centre is working with our Crawley Forward Thinkers to support ongoing training. Many people with dementia are not able to take part in activities they enjoyed before they developed the condition, they want to engage with society but need support.
“It is possible to make small changes that will make their day to day lives much better and being able to stay part of a community for longer, rather than moving into a care home, which will also save society money. We’re looking forward to working with the centre for the years to come.”
To find out more about the support and services available locally, contact Alzheimer’s Society’s Sussex Helpline on 01403 213017.