After almost 500 participants bravely took on the inclines of Knole Park back on 13 May for Run, walk or push against dementia, Sevenoaks District Council can reveal almost £7,000 was raised for the Sevenoaks Area Dementia Friendly Community, trumping the previous year by over £2,500.
Residents from all over the District and beyond turned out in full force on a sunny morning to take on one of the timed 3, 5 or 10 kilometre races on the beautiful backdrop of the medieval deer park.
On Friday 6th July, Sevenoaks District Chairman, Cllr Pat Bosley, presented a cheque for the money raised to Forum co-chairs Elaine Ferris and Symone Salwan at Knole House with the money funding dementia friendly projects across the Sevenoaks District such as the continuation of the Forget-me-not Cafes as well as a new singing group.
The cheque was presented at the Sevenoaks branch of the Forget-me-not Café in Knole House, which runs on the first Friday of every month and was funded by the money raised from last years’ event.
The café, which also has others branches in Edenbridge and Westerham, provides support and companionship to those in the community who are living with memory issues or dementia as well as their carers, family and friends.
Sevenoaks District Chairman, Cllr Pat Bosley, says: “We really were overwhelmed by the amount of support we had on the day and it’s incredible now to see how we’ve smashed last year’s total and for all the runners and sponsors to see where there efforts and money are going towards.
“The money will fund important projects such as the Forget-me-not Café’s which support those who are effected by dementia and it is such an achievement to keep these going.
“I’d also like to thank the volunteers and Council staff who gave up their Sunday and helped out on the day.”
Elaine Murray, who co-chairs the Sevenoaks Area Dementia Friendly Community with Symone Salwan, adds: “We are thrilled to have raised so much more than last year for our group to help make the Sevenoaks Area become more dementia friendly. With this money we can to support more people experiencing memory and cognitive decline and their carers to continue to live well in their own homes and engaged in their community.
“These funds will go a long way to open further Forget-Me-Not Café’s, establish our singing group: The Forget-Me-Notes, host dementia friendly cinema screenings and our popular wellbeing days. We have an ambitious target to establish a Sevenoaks Wellbeing Information and Services Hub in partnership with Sevenoaks District Council in the next 12 months.
“Run, walk or push against dementia was well supported on the day by many people who gave up their time to deliver a smooth, family focused, fun event. Both Kent Police and Kent Fire& Rescue got behind us and we would like to give special thanks to ‘Kent Volunteer Police Cadets’ who seamlessly marshalled the event keeping everyone safe and on the right course.”