Last month we were privileged to host former South Australian, Australian of the Year Kate Swaffer at a special ADA Australia forum, which focused on the current dementia care landscape and what the sector can do to assist Australians living with dementia.
The event discussed critical issues impacting those living with dementia as well as their loved ones. Kate shared her inspirational story, drawing on personal insights to discuss a wide range of topics. She discussed why it’s important to reframe how communities view those living with dementia and disabilities, as well as the elderly, so that they are seen as a whole person.
Kate also drew attention to the importance of maintaining the human rights of ageing Australians, and those with a disability, calling on communities and governments to act. She presented her solution; a government policy to incentivise organisations to assist with independence, rather than catering for high levels of care, which she says is counter-intuitive.
Following her dementia diagnosis at 49, Kate was determined not to let this dictate her future. Instead of submitting to life in care, she continued to study at university, sought assistance from university disability services and was supported by her family.
She now advocates on behalf of all with dementia, disabilities and the elderly to be able to continue an independent life. Her insights are regularly presented to a wide range of international stakeholders and attendees of the forum were excited to hear from her and empowered by her message.
For those who couldn’t attend on the day, we are thrilled to share a special video with you of her key pieces of advice. To view the video, click here.