The Dementia Diaries and Learning Resource

The Dementia Diaries, which tells the stories of dementia through the eyes of grandchildren, was a groundbreaking book co-created in 2013. This NHS award-winning project has now been republished for a global audience.  

These are not just Diaries they are a real beacon of hope for the future
— Angela Rippon, OBE

The Dementia Diaries is a 'novel in cartoons' which shares illustrated cartoons based on true stories of "the good days, the bad days and everything in between". Directing this initiative from concept to distribution, Emma spent considerable time with all the families involved, working in collaboration with creative film-maker Matthew Snyman, teacher Nicki Komorowski and an advisory board of medical and social care professionals. Uniquely, the team reported back to an Editorial Board of all contributing children and families - Young Carers themselves defining the specification for the book "where the facts are true and the feelings are real".

The book is now accompanied by a 150 page Learning Resource, in the same style and featuring the same characters, which is available as a free download via a QR code in the new hardback edition. The team are currently looking for financial investment to make an app from the learning resource content. 

This book is amazing! As someone who lived with dementia from a young age and now works with people with dementia in a professional capacity, this book is incredible picking up on the emotions and events which are known only tho those that have lived it. I highly recommend this book - it has been utilised by a friend to raise awareness at a primary school, and the pupils really got it and enjoyed how the ‘diary’ is written and the activities
— Laura 5* Amazon Review 15.10.16

An article about creating The Dementia Diaries and their impact was published in the UK and Australian Journal of Dementia Care and is available here

In 2015, Emma and Matthew were invited to Denmark for a book tour of social, health and educational settings in the Midt region of Denmark. The book's new hardback edition by Jessica Kingsley Publishers has been a resounding success and continues to inform and inspire audiences around the world. US based Global Health Aging ran a book giveaway for Dementia Awareness Week in 2016 and it has been recognised in the School Library Association Prize Long List for 2017. 

The Dementia Diaries is available to purchase in the UK here and internationally here

 Click on Grandpa to access The Dementia Diaries Facebook Community 

Click on Grandpa to access The Dementia Diaries Facebook Community 

 Gramps in Fred's notebook

Gramps in Fred's notebook

 The Dementia Diaries

The Dementia Diaries

 Sample page from The Dementia Diaries Learning Resource

Sample page from The Dementia Diaries Learning Resource

Testimonials

A beautiful book from the first page to the last word
— Anne Child, MBE
As an Occupational Therapist of over 30 years most of them spent working in the area of home health care, I jumped at the opportunity to read and review this book, an import from England. As the book’s description states, it is the product of a challenge to raise awareness and understanding of dementia throughout the United Kingdom...and it does so through the words and drawings of children in diary form. These are adapted from the real life experiences of actual children, experiencing day to day living with grandparents who have begun changing before them, yet, they find, still remain essentially the same.

I find this to be an excellent resource...dementia as seen from the perspective of the child(ren) in the family. The book, written as diary entries, reports feelings, events, changes in family life and loved ones behavior...all done very realistically. There are also activities and resources to help understanding and coping as well as links to youtube videos, etc. The book is being used in British school systems and I hope the closing resources are updated for the US by providing a list of American contact agencies, though the internet does have many available, as do local VNAs and public health agencies, etc. This can be a valuable resource for families and for children who may be struggling with the changes happening around them.

Very highly recommended.
— Sue, GoodReads.com, USA
We need innovative resources, such as The Dementia Diaries, as an educational resource for everyone. This novel in cartoons will engage children and adults around the world. In fact the idea of making a book about dementia by children is groundbreaking. I highly recommend The Dementia Diaries to anyone that wants to learn about the challenges of dementia through the eyes of young children
— Sophie Okolo, Aging Professional, USA
The work you are doing is so moving and so very important
— Artz, Philadelphia, USA
I work within a Home Treatment Service that specialise in supporting those with a diagnosis or probable diagnosis. I have the belief that publications like this could well aid in reducing stigma attached to a diagnosis of dementia. Not only can it bring some comfort to those with a new or longstanding diagnosis  and to their families/carers, but it can also provide education
— JC, Mental Health Nurse, Sittingbourne, Kent, UK
Once I started to read The Dementia Diaries I couldn’t put it down, and I’m not a reader. Some parts I found quite humorous, others reduced me to tears. The attitude of these young people to dementia is very uplifting. As a fairly new Carer, I can learn. An exceptional book - well done to all who contributed. Thank You
— JW, Carer, Kent, UK