£2.5 million to help empower people affected by dementia

By Press Office

A world renowned nursing leader has helped secure a ground breaking investment which will support people with dementia and carers to become experts, leaders and influencers in Scotland.

Professor Brendan McCormack, QMU’s Head of Division of Nursing, who has  a global reputation for his work in person centred practice and older people, has been a driving force in securing the £2.5 million investment from the Life Changes Trust. The funding will be used to create a School of Leadership in Dementia and a National Forum for Dementia Policy and Practice.

Professor McCormack has worked in collaboration with leaders from the Life Changes Trust, Age Scotland and the University of Edinburgh to bring this exciting development to fruition. The creation of the National Forum will bring together people with experience and expertise in dementia, locally and nationally, with the aim of evidencing what will create better lives for people with dementia and those who support them.

The Forum will work with people with lived experience and other key influencers to shape policy and practice that in ways that are meaningful to people’s everyday lives.  The Life Changes Trust School of Leadership will use creative and shared learning methods to work with communities to empower local leaders to be at the forefront of change and development.  This is so that Scotland can become an exemplar of how, in all aspects of life, people with dementia can find meaning, be fully supported and involved and ultimately, flourish as persons.

Professor McCormack, who has a reputation as a dynamic nurse leader, has worked tirelessly throughout his career to ensure practitioners and policy makers put users of services at the centre of decision making. His influence is far reaching with health systems across the globe keen to learn and adopt his philosophies. He is proud to be part of this progressive collaboration and delighted that the programme will bring together people with a particular interest and experience in dementia to develop their expertise so that they can be integral to leading positive change at all levels of society.

He said: ““Being a part of this ground-breaking development to work with people living with dementia and their carers strengthens the opportunity for all people in all communities to reach their full potential.  Our work focuses on helping all people to flourish and the Life Changes Trust School of Leadership and Policy & Practice Forum will equip people living with dementia to shape their lives and communities in ways that really matter to them.  Having those with lived experience leading and shaping future policy and practice is essential if we are to change their experience for the better. 

“Both projects will build on and advance existing good practice and grow the potential of new, future leaders to make a real difference to people’s lives.”

Anna Buchanan, Interim CEO of the Life Changes Trust, said, “The School of Leadership and the Forum will, in due course, change the landscape of the dementia world in Scotland.  They will create a strong network of people with shared values and purpose, supporting them to make a major contribution to transforming the lives of people with dementia and unpaid carers.  Both projects are vehicles that will support and encourage people with dementia and their carers to flourish and develop, gaining leadership skills and confidence to have their voices heard in a way that will have real impact.  They will ensure the needs of people with dementia, their families and unpaid carers are met and their lives fundamentally transformed for the better.”



Notes to Editor

For further media information please contact Lynne Russell, Communications Manager at Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh, E: lrussell@qmu.ac.uk T: 0131 474 0000.

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