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Cafe in Ipoh the first to cater to dementia patients and care partners begins operation in Ipoh on Nov 15

Malay Mail
Malay Mail

IPOH, Nov 9 — A cafe in Ipoh for people with dementia will open on November 15.

It is believed to be first-of-its-kind in Malaysia.

The Bougainvillea City Dementia Cafe (BCDC) in Ipoh is run according to a set of principles and guidelines from the Irish Dementia Cafe Network, of which BCDC is an associate member.

Cafe co-ordinator Peter J. Bucher said BCDC is a cafe for people living with dementia and their care partners, families, friends and the community.

Speaking to Malay Mail, Bucher said the idea to have the cafe came after his wife Irene had her inaugural art exhibition in June.

“Following the exhibition, it highlighted the need for regular dementia education and support and the Bougainvillea City Dementia Cafe hopes to provide an informal and friendly setting for care partners to network and learn from each other,” he said.

Run by a voluntary steering committee, Bucher said the cafe is free of charge.

“People living with dementia, their families and friends, healthcare professionals and people who are interested in supporting a dementia inclusive community, are welcomed to come.”

According to Bucher, the four principles of a dementia cafe are atmosphere, information, support and community.

“The atmosphere of the meeting venue must be warm, welcoming ,informal and relaxed while information is provided on dementia care and support.”

“Attendees can also talk to others who have similar experiences in dealing with dementia patients and the cafe hopes to bring the people together and create a supportive community for people living with dementia and their care partners.”

According to Bucher, the four principles of a dementia cafe are atmosphere, information, support and community. ― Picture by Farhan Najib
According to Bucher, the four principles of a dementia cafe are atmosphere, information, support and community. ― Picture by Farhan Najib

According to Bucher, the four principles of a dementia cafe are atmosphere, information, support and community. ― Picture by Farhan Najib

During each session, Bucher said there would be guest speakers who will talk about dementia, including alternative therapies like arts, music, song and dance.

“In conclusion, dementia cafes can help to reduce isolation, which is a major factor in developing depression, anxiety and worsening cognition.”

For a start, the cafe, which is located at 1, Jalan Lasam, Greentown, meets every third Tuesday of the month from 10am to noon.

But Bucher does not discount the possibility of increasing the number of meetings.

“It all depends on the response.”

For details, email dementiacafe.ipoh@gmail.com or Whatsapp 019-5743572.