Julie Kerton is employed as a staff nurse working in a day hospital for older people with dementia and mental health issues.
Although she has always been passionate about improving care for people with dementia, it was the Advanced Dementia Care Mapping (DCM) course with Bradford Dementia Group that inspired her to study for a BSc (Hons) in Dementia Studies and to take her interests further.
“The dementia training that I have undertaken with Bradford Dementia Group has really improved my confidence and developed my belief in my own abilities,” comments Julie. “I can now relate much better to people with dementia and am delighted that many of my colleagues now regard me as someone who specialises in person-centred dementia care and seek my support and feedback.”
Using the knowledge she has developed on her training courses, Julie has now set up a support group for people with early and moderate dementia in her local area. The service users within the group are very proud of Julie’s academic achievements. Julie has also set up a garden project for people with dementia and their carers, as a direct result of her studies at Bradford.
“The project has enabled us to transform a garden area and everyone who took part really enjoyed this work. Two gentlemen with dementia who participated in the garden project are now involved as service users in training events, and it has been excellent to see this level of engagement,” says Julie.
Julie is delighted that her work with people with dementia has recently been recognised through her nomination and shortlisting for Dementia Nurse of the Year. She has also applied for a post as a dementia trainer within the OPTED team at Hellesdon.