The Food Buddies project aims to develop peer support for people living with dementia in the Borders around all aspects of food and keeping well. The project works with staff in catering establishments to make them aware of symptoms of dementia, and how to help and communicate with people to ensure they have a comfortable experience when eating out.
The project is run by national organisation Outside the Box whose Borders Development Worker Jan Laing said: “We are delighted to work in partnership with the Food Foundation to further strengthen the reputation of the Eastgate Theatre café as an accessible venue with warm, welcoming staff. Staff training has gone beyond the café and the theatre has committed to incorporate dementia-friendly features in any future redevelopment of any part of the building.”
Eastgate Café Manager Mikuni Uehara added: “I think we are already well known as a fully accessible café, welcoming everyone from people with buggies to those using wheelchairs and muddy bikers. We are proud to add dementia friendly to the café description. It has been very useful to work with Food Buddies, with café and theatre staff learning a lot of useful tips from the training.”
After their light lunch, a packed audience was entertained by a performance of easy listening music by the Gerard Dott Trio featuring Gerard on clarinet, Robbie Tatler on double bass and Lorraine Mulholland on piano.