Join in the golf conversation on Dementia Action Week

England Golf has confirmed its strong commitment to supporting people in and around the game affected by dementia.

Today marks the start of the 2021 Dementia Action Week and, after an interrupted year, it is vitally important to continue having open conversations about dementia and to signpost support available in the game.

Here at England Golf, we recognise that many people affected by dementia may have been unable to play as much golf as they would have liked in the past 12 months even during those periods when lockdown restrictions allowed courses to remain open.

For many golfers requiring to shield, it’s not been appropriate to keep playing.

Perhaps social distancing regulations have meant it’s simply not been possible to call on the support of family, friends and volunteers – so crucial to a community of golfers dealing with dementia.

As the country continues to get back on its feet and more golfers develop the confidence to play, it is important to recognise that people’s situations may also have changed.

In September 2019, England Golf launched resources to support conversations around dementia and shared the story of friends, Terry and Dave.

Their positive tale explained how – with some simple adjustments – people affected by dementia can continue to play the game.

It is now a mandatory condition of affiliation for golf clubs to be SafeGolf accredited. This standard is not just focused on juniors, but also embraces adults who could be at risk, including those affected by dementia.

Whilst we support people with dementia to have an independent and fulfilling life, we also recognise that they should be able to do this while sharing knowledge of their diagnosis and take comfort from knowing they will be fully supported as they continue to live life to the max.

During the various lockdowns a number of clubs in England have also taken the opportunity to become ‘Dementia Friends’ and remove the stigma around dementia that may exist within their clubs or within their membership.

If you are affected by dementia as a golfer or perhaps support someone living with dementia to remain active, then the current resources available from England Golf should help you make any necessary adjustments.

If you are a golfer or a golf club who require some further support around this area, then please contact safeguarding@englandgolf.org

By working together we can continue to make golf open to everyone no matter the challenges placed in our way.