Libraries are to offer greater support to people living with dementia and their loved ones when seeking information about the debilitating condition.  

More than 100 libraries across Scotland have formed partnerships with their local Alzheimer Scotland Dementia Resource Centre to share a wide range of information materials and provide greater support library users to access online dementia and brain health resources.  

Staff have also undertaken training through Alzheimer Scotland’s Dementia Friends Scotland programme, to help them better understand the day-to-day challenges of living with dementia and support for people with dementia to fully use the library’s resources. 

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Around 90,000 people are currently living with dementia in Scotland, and the hope is the partnership will provide an another important step to making sure nobody faces dementia alone. 

Some of the libraries will also create space for a local Alzheimer Scotland Dementia Advisor for drop-in sessions for people with dementia and their carers. 

Bill Alexander, a member of the National Dementia Carers Action Network and carer for his wife Christine, said that the new partnership will help people get the help they need.  

The Herald:

The launch was celebrated with a Tea & Blether event in Central Library, Stirling during Scotland’s Dementia Awareness Week

Mr Alexander said: “Being able to get information on dementia from your local library, and take part in dementia-friendly activities, will make a big difference to a lot of people.  

“I’m really glad that these libraries are providing this service. Spending time with other people in the same boat and being able to make new friends is invaluable.”  

The partnership has been launched with Alzheimer Scotland and the Scottish Libraries & Information Council, along with the Digital Health & Care Innovation Centre and Alzheimer Scotland. 

Libraries where the services can be accessed include those in Stirling, Aberdeenshire, Glasgow, Fife, North Ayrshire, Inverclyde, the Lothians, East Dunbartonshire and Renfrewshire, with around 120 taking part overall.  

Pamela Tulloch, Chief Executive of the Scottish Library & Information Council, said: “Libraries offer a calm, welcoming safe haven for anyone looking for respite, support and information about dementia.  

“Our public libraries play a crucial role tackling this very real problem and they also offer a wide range of information, both on site, online and through quality-assured reading lists.”  

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Kirsty Stewart, Executive Lead for Stakeholder Engagement at Alzheimer Scotland, added: “It’s wonderful to see so many community libraries commit to being local dementia information hubs.  

“I am inspired by how the partnership has really embraced learning about dementia; by educating themselves, providing information, creating links with local Alzheimer Scotland supports and ensuring their community spaces are welcoming for anyone living with dementia or worried about their memory.”