Memory cafe returns - just a little later than planned

People get together

There will be a chance to get together soon when Ottery's memory cafe returns - Credit: Submitted

The return of Ottery St Mary’s popular memory cafe has been delayed following the Prime Minister’s announcement that covid pandemic safety restrictions would continue for another four weeks.
But the organisation behind the dementia-friendly facility says it won’t be long before it can return to its vital role. And there was good news this week with the launch of a new weekly dementia-friendly activity group in the town.
The memory cafe, which has been a lifeline for people in Ottery and the surrounding area, was due to return on June 24. That date has now been put back to July 22.
But a new dementia-friendly activity group - similar to those that have been running successfully in Whimple and Feniton - got under way in Ottery on Wednesday this week.
Emily Lezzeri, chief officer with the Ottery Help Scheme, which facilitates the memory cafe, said the new weekly activity groups were based on cognitive stimulation therapy, which provided mixed, multi-sensory creative work and reminiscence for people in the early stages of dementia.
They will take place every week at The Station in Ottery.
Ottery Help Scheme also announced this week that it is looking to recruit an East Devon VCSE Network Co-ordinator. This person will serve as a key resource for partners within the various voluntary, community and social enterprise organisations in East Devon. This role will require the appointee to develop, establish and maintain robust relationships with VCSE organisations and to work hands on with the network in order to improve key interactions, communications and the delivery of services. The role will also involve the identification of funding opportunities, writing bids, and liaising with the wider VCSE network across Devon.
The key functions of this post include:
Establishing good communication and working practices between partners including health, social care, health and wellbeing forums, district & local councils, VCSE organisations, and other community groups and services.
Working with existing health and wellbeing and VCSE forums and services in identifying shared objectives and opportunities to build and support provision identified as under-resourced. This will include co-ordinating and writing funding bids.
Working with health and wellbeing forums and services to develop mechanisms to identify hidden service gaps more effectively.
Organising and coordinating meetings to ensure effective communication and interactions between the East Devon Network, strategic partners, commissioners, Integrated Care Systems and VCSE organisations.
The role will be hosted by Ottery Help Scheme but will serve the whole of the East Devon District Council area.

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