Kidderminster Harriers have proudly announced that its 21st January home match is to be officially designated a ‘Dementia friendly’ fixture – believed to be the first of its kind.
The Aggborough Stadium club has been working to develop an official partnership with the Dementia Action Alliance (DAA) in a bid to become officially recognised as a dementia-friendly football club – a place where those living with the disease can watch football in a comfortable and secure environment.
Work alongside the Alzheimer’s Society continues to flourish and, as a result, Harriers are specifically welcoming all comers to their match against AFC Telford United on Saturday, 21st January (3pm). Football Development Director for Harriers, Adam Crowle, explained: “The work we’ve been doing with the Kidderminster DAA is making a real difference to those with Dementia, and their families, in our local community.
“From the game against AFC Telford on the 21st onwards, we will have a specific area of Aggborough with priority seating on match days for those with Dementia and their carers. This is a first for any football club and we are pleased that it is happening at Kidderminster Harriers – it’s as a result of a lot of care and thought and after undertaking a ground audit with several staff from the club, Alzheimer’s Society and people locally living with Dementia.”
Janet Smith of the Alzheimer’s Society added: “We are delighted to be working closely with Kidderminster Harriers to help improve the lives of those living with dementia. By creating a dementia friendly environment we can ensure everyone in our community can continue to enjoy watching great football. We want to challenge the stigma surrounding dementia and build awareness within our communities through the work of the local Dementia Action Alliance. This will help us empower those affected by dementia to continue to do the things we take for granted.”
As well as ensuring the ground is suitably accessible on the day, Harriers will be ensuring that the entry to the match is affordable by offering entry to each adult and carer together for just £10.
“In the coming months we aim to setup a regular football reminiscence group at Aggborough, where anyone affected by dementia come along, meet those in similar circumstances, have some refreshments and look back on sporting memories that have occurred within their lifetime.
“This partnership is exciting and hugely rewarding and we look forward to welcoming all of those in attendance against AFC Telford on the 21st.
Anyone interested in finding out more about the club’s work with the DAA and Alzheimer’s Society, or who may wish to help volunteer to help continue this work, can contact Adam at firstname.lastname@example.org.