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Captain's Charity Day helps to raise £10,000 for Forget Me Not Dementia appeal

My Wish Charity ChequeRAWMGolfers, donors, plus a series of fundraising initiatives have helped to raise £10,000 to support the work of carers of dementia patients at the West Suffolk Hospital.

A Captains’ Charity Day, held at Stowmarket Golf Club, attracted 96 participants split into 24 teams of four, with each team paying £160; a total of £242 was made from a cake sale; while additional money came via a bottle on the bar at the clubhouse and an auction along with suppliers to the business of men’s captain Martin Anderson donating between £2,000 and £3,000 towards the fund.

Mr Anderson linked up with ladies’ captain Joan Hunter, and senior’s captain Ian Hay for the golf day which was held in July last year.

But the coronavirus pandemic delayed them handing over a cheque to the My WiSH Charity, which supports the work of the hospital, in Bury St Edmunds, with the money directed towards the Forget Me Not Dementia Appeal.

Mr Anderson, who was the club captain for 2019/2020, said they chose the appeal which was close to his heart as his mother suffered from the complaint and died in January 2017.

“I wanted to do something to raise money for the dementia campaign as my mother died from dementia and we all agreed to do it for the same charity,” he said. “And we only just got round to doing the presentation because of the coronavirus restrictions. Many thanks to the members and sponsors for their generosity and support throughout the year.”

The money raised will be used to buy a digital reminiscence machine (DGM) and fund music and art therapy sessions for patients.

The DGM is known as a RITA (Reminiscence Interactive Therapy Activities) and is like a television crossed with a tablet. It has a touch screen and allows patient to watch TV, play music, but also play games such as bingo. It helps calms the patient, reduces falls as they are less likely to get out of bed and wander and increase patient experience. 

They cost £5,000 each and the money raised by the golf club will be used by the Keeping In Touch team who work with patients across the hospital, helping them to feel less isolated and keeping them connected with their loved ones.

Maggie Woodhouse, the dementia practitioner, said: “We have a monthly dementia audit across the hospital recording that 25% to 30% of our patients are affected by dementia, delirium or confusion so supporting these patients enables a better experience and better outcomes on discharge. This interactive equipment is aimed at patients who are anxious about the hospital environment and can be used to avoid agitated behaviour and to increase the patient experience, they can be personalised to the patient, using music pictures, films and activities.”

And Sally Daniels, My WiSH fundraising manager, added: “The amount raised by the golf club is just amazing and we can’t thank Martin, Joan and Ian enough for their support. As Maggie said, we have a large number of patients who will really benefit from using the equipment and also the therapy sessions. We are so proud to continue to support our Forget Me Not Dementia appeal to ensure that, not only is the hospital stay the best it can be, but that the experience is actually enriched.”


Pictured with their cheque for £10,000 for the Forget Me Not Dementia Appeal are Martin Anderson, men’s captain; Joan Hunter, ladies’ captain and Ian Hay, senior’s captain.


Written by Russell Cook


Charity Registration Number:1049223