and Guinness

13 July 2018

Four years ago, we made a commitment to become a dementia-friendly organisation ensuring our homes and services meet the needs of our customers living with dementia, enabling them to live in their own homes for as long as possible.

Three older women having tea in a conservatory.We’ve made huge strides. Today we have 1,250 Dementia Friends at Guinness and we officially opened our impressive new dementia-friendly development, Quayside in Totnes back in May 2018.

Where it all began

We started with dementia hub trials in 2014 and produced a report about our aims to be a dementia-friendly organisation, which won an award at the International Dementia Awards.

In 2016, we launched our Housing and Dementia Project and set out our Dementia Strategy. We’ve also worked with the Alzheimer’s Society and Dementia Action Alliance to shape the national Dementia-friendly housing charter.

We’ve published our own best practice guide with advice on how to create a dementia-friendly environment, looking at both interior and exterior design.

Our recent work

During National Apprenticeship Week this year, three Guinness Property apprentices spent a week renovating the lounge at Duncan Cooper House, a sheltered housing scheme in Havant.

The lounge is the hub of the scheme, hosting coffee mornings, quiz nights and other social events. As well as freshening up the lounge, our apprentices made it more dementia-friendly by:

  • Decorating the toilet, entrance and communal room in a neutral colour and whitening the woodwork
  • Moving the notice board to a more prominent position
  • Changing the lightbulbs to LED daylights to lighten up the room
  • Installing chrome light switches so they stand out against the paintwork
  • Installing a coloured toilet seat and coloured handrail
  • Displaying dementia-friendly signage

We are now evaluating our Housing and Dementia Project. We’re doing more to help customers living with dementia in a personalised way. Also, being dementia-friendly has now become a part of our everyday business.