After operating for 6 years at their former base, the Butterflies Memory Loss Support Group has found a new city-centre home from which to deliver their popular drop-in sessions, supporting people living with dementia.
The Butterflies were first established in 2010 with a monthly group in East Hull when June’s Dad, George, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. They gained charitable status in 2015 and currently support around 80 people at a weekly luncheon club in Garden Village, and monthly sessions in West Hull and Cottingham, and at their HQ on King Edward Street.
June Cooke, founder of the group said: “It’s with a very heavy heart that we have had to move. We will be forever grateful to Mal Scott for his support and generosity over the last 6 years, providing us with a home at Kardomah 94 on Alfred Gelder Street. His encouragement and positivity has been invaluable, helping us to grow Butterflies to what it is today, a life-line for people living with dementia, and the loved ones supporting them.
“Our new home is just a stone’s throw away in Stonefield House on King Edward Street. You may have seen us through the last few months, moving our belongings across the city the old fashioned way, not quite on handcarts, but wheel chairs and a shopping trolly! The things us charities do to save a few bob!
“During the move we discovered just how many pieces of art, created by our members, we had been storing. We’ve now decided it’s about time this artwork found a home on someone’s wall.
“With this in mind, we will be holding an open day and art sale on Saturday 5th October, 10 am to 4pm in our new project home – Stonefield House, King Edward Street. This event will also give people a chance to see our new space and have a chat with staff and volunteers about how we can help them.”
The Butterflies are planning to offer more services within their new base, including a monthly carers’ drop-in, with a supporting craft session for the cared-for. This will enable carers to have a bit of a break, and time to chat with their peers. The cared-for can come along too and take part in an activity with staff and volunteers.
The first of these sessions for carers will be on Wednesday 23rd October, between 1pm and 3 pm, costing just £2.50 per person.
June also plans to relaunch the ‘Voice and Influence’ forum. The Forum is an opportunity for members of the public to share their experiences of everyday living with dementia, chatting directly with those organisations providing support services, and hopefully influencing service delivery to the benefit of all.
June said: “If you are a person with dementia or a family member supporting someone, we need your input. We want you to come along and share your experiences with us – good and bad! The Voice and Influence Forum is vital as we endeavour to improve your experiences of the services you receive and make Hull a dementia friendly city.”
June added: “It’s important to us that anyone who has dementia, has an opportunity to share their views too. We will be using innovative and sensitive ways of gathering thoughts and comments, involving fun and meaningful activities.”
[Editor & June Cooke, Butterflies Memory Los Support Group]