User-lead group Salford Inspire are releasing a series of short films to raise awareness for dementia.

The first video in the series was released on the 27th February and features the group’s facilitator, Dr Joy Watson, as she speaks out about her struggle with Alzheimer’s disease and her journey to diagnosis.

The films will follow Dr Watson through her life with dementia and how this impacts her- with the videos set to be released every two to three months, right up until the end of her life.

Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive illness and is the most common cause of dementia– affecting more than 500,000 people across the UK.


During the video, Dr Watson states: “My clumsiness got worse, my memory got worse, and my eyesight- that just deteriorated overnight it seemed. Until one day I messed up with my client’s medication. Not severely, but bad enough for me to hand in my notice.”

The short video sees Dr Watson explain her symptoms, how they crept into her daily life, and how she ultimately got a diagnosis from her GP.

She continued: “I walked into the consultant’s office…she said ‘…according to your notes I understand it’s your birthday, happy birthday’ and almost in the same breath she said ‘Oh yes and you’ve got Alzheimer’s disease’.”

Emma Smith, who supports Dr Watson as group facilitator at Salford Inspire, commented on the project, stating: “We want to show people what it’s really like living with dementia-postives as well as negatives.”

She continued: “It’s essential that people with dementia get to shape, develop and lead on dementia projects. We believe in co-production all the way. We want to offer people with dementia an opportunity to use their vast array of skills to make a difference.”

The films come during the lead up to Dementia Action Week, which runs from the 21st to 27th May 2018.

Salford Inspire are encouraging people to share the video on social media to spread the word about the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.

Watch the first video in the short film series here:

The group also run a class called ‘Flippin’ Calligraphy‘ every Friday until 23rd March from 10am-12pm for people in Salford who are affected by dementia, as well as other projects and activities aiming to spread awareness of dementia across Salford.

The theme of the class is exploring some of the unhelpful comments people make to those effected by dementia.

This allows a person to capture something unhelpful said to them around dementia, they then flip the paper and suggest a more helpful statement instead.

The short films will be uploaded onto the group’s YouTube channel.

Salford Inspire is part of the Dementia Support Services team at Age UK Salford and is funded by the Neighbourhoods and Dementia Study, led by The University of Manchester (ESCR/NIHR).

If you are interested in booking a slot on the calligraphy class or want some more information on this, email

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