MFN ii – the Virtual Neighbourhood
Memory-Friendly Neighbourhoods (MFN) was a knowledge exchange programme exploring how local communities can support people with dementia. It was led by the Universities of Stirling and Edinburgh, with support from the Centre for Dementia Research at the University of Linkoping, Alzheimer Scotland, Anderson Bell Christie Architects and Architecture and Design Scotland.
Through two events at the Scottish Universities Insights Institute, and on-site mapping work in Kirkintilloch (an approach that brought together local people living with dementia and the programme participants to navigate the town centre), we exchanged ideas and best practice with experts from around the world, demonstrated more inclusive ways of sharing experiences with people with dementia, and developed a network of people with related expertise which continues to thrive online. We produced a series of podcasts and videos of our expert speakers, as well as written summaries of our group discussions, which – together with academic and practice-led papers and videos – are freely available on our website, http://memoryfriendly.org.uk
Following on from this, a second phase of Memory-Friendly Neighbourhoods, MFN ii – the Virtual Neighbourhood, directly addresses the knowledge gaps we have identified around digital exclusion and dementia, and take the same innovative, practical approach to knowledge exchange that underpinned our work in Kirkintilloch.
Through exploring the navigation of online environments for a person living with dementia, we aim to develop guidelines for web designers and their clients which will maximise the reach and impact of, not only our own work, but that of many others across academia, policy, practice and the not-for-profit sector, including a series of new Dementia Friendly Communities projects funded by one of our supporting partners, the Life Changes Trust (LCT).