Connection to nature and the outdoors has significant wellbeing benefits for people with dementia and their caregivers. However, some people have lost confidence in taking a person with dementia out and about, especially after months of shielding and lockdown.

If you are feeling isolated or anxious about leaving your home, we can help you regain your confidence to get outside.

Enjoy a Supported Outing

Our supported days out offers you the help and encouragement you need to enjoy the benefits of getting outdoors for yourself regularly. 

If you have dementia or have a friend or family member who does, we’ll organise a supported day out for you to enjoy together in the Essex countryside or by the coast. Choose from a variety of locations, including wide open parks, beautiful gardens, nature rich forests, and the coast.

Our expert team will take care of you and all the details to ensure you have the peace of mind to relax, grow in confidence and get the most from being in the great outdoors.

 

What to expect

  • Increased confidence to get outside more frequently.
  • Experience of the wellbeing benefits of nature and the outdoors.
  • Connection to your local area.
  • An opportunity to do something new.
  • To be with other people in a similar situation to you.
  • The possibility of peer support.
  • Guidance and companionship from our expert team who can answer your questions and signpost you for further support to get outdoors.

 

Who are these outings suitable for?

These supported days out are for people living with dementia and their primary supporter. We offer outings with a range of accessibility options, and will discuss your needs and preferences before you go.

If you have questions about whether these outings are for you, please contact our team.

Before we go

We take care of all the planning for you. 

When you book your outing, we will request information that will help us support you on your day out, looking at health, mobility, hobbies and interests. 

We will then call you to discuss your booking and answer your questions.

If you have questions about this process, please contact our team.

Support

An experienced member of our team will join you on the day to take care of you and all the practical details, along with at least one supporter for every person living with dementia. 

We’ll be sensitive to your individual needs, encouraging independence where possible, and providing as little or as much support as you require. Please ask our team, on the day, questions you may have about dementia or supporting someone who lives with the condition. 

We are:

  • DBS checked 
  • Trained to understand dementia and the key challenges.
  • Trained in risk analysis for outdoor activities.
  • Trained in communication and dementia.
  • Trained in safeguarding.
  • Certificated first aid qualification.  
  • Fully vaccinated for COVID-19.

 

Where will we go?

Currently, all our supported days out are in Essex. You can choose from a variety of locations. We hope to offer other areas of the UK in 2022. 

Locations depend on current government guidance and our own risk assessment in relation to Covid-19.

 

How do I book?

Choose from our range of locations and click on a date to reserve your place. We will ask you for some detailed information so that we can confirm your booking.

 

Will we be with other people?

Depending on the location, it may be possible we book you onto a outing with at least another person with dementia and their friend or family member. This gives you an opportunity for connection with others in a similar situation to you.

On every outing, there will be a Dementia Adventure team member for every person with dementia. It will not reduce your level of support by being out with other people.

 

Can I go on more than one supported day out?

The aim of these outings is to support as many people as possible to gain the confidence to get outside by themselves. If you feel that after one day out you still do not have the confidence to get out alone, we will take you on a second outing.

These trips are not ongoing, regular activities. If that is what you are looking for, please contact us, we may be able to help you find what you are looking for. 

 

How much do these trips cost?

As a charity, we don’t want the cost of coming on an outing to be a barrier. Thanks to the generosity of our charitable funders, we can subsidise the cost of these supported days out but, if you can make a small contribution towards the day, this would help us enormously.

As a guideline, we are suggesting £15 per person. You can make this voluntary donation here. But, don’t worry, if this is not affordable, please have the day on us!

There may be additional fees for parking and entry at some of the locations that are not covered by Dementia Adventure.

 

What about Covid-19?

We will follow Government guidance on numbers for outdoor household mixing. We require everyone who books to be fully vaccinated, with both doses, at least 21 days before their supported day out.

Locations depend on current government guidance and our own risk assessment in relation to Covid-19.

John & Gill Barefoot in the Park

We took John and Gill to Hyde Hall in Essex for a picnic lunch and walk about the gardens.

When we spoke with Gill during lockdown she was finding things very difficult, as she’d not been able to go out with John for weeks and it had led to his dementia deteriorating.

As the trip started John was very quiet, and not engaging with others, but as the day went on his interaction levels increased significantly with Gill commenting that she ‘hadn’t seen him speak at this level for many months now’. 

A highlight of the day was a beautiful moment of connecting with nature as we took our shoes off and walked barefoot on the soft grass, while smelling the flowers that surrounded us. 

Following the trip Gill says that John’s level of interaction has increased, he is more responsive to her and when he is with the wider family he communicates with them more than he was.  The ‘out and about’ day was a positive experience for them, making significant difference to them both.

Since their day out Gill and John have gone on to enjoy a picnic out with her family. Gill said that before the trip she wouldn’t have taken a picnic as it would have felt like too much pressure with John to consider, but they both enjoyed their Hyde Hall picnic so much, she now feels confident to do it herself.

It was lovely to go somewhere, and be able to look at the plants and relax, as I wouldn’t normally be able to do this.
woman and mum sitting on bench in the park
It’s ever so lovely here. I can’t remember where I am or why I am here, but I’m really glad I came.
To be able to do this was invaluable.

Can you provide transport?

We ask you to make your own way to the venue. If getting there will be a challenge, we will look at other options with you, including community transport. 

We will always try to overcome any hurdles so that a supported day out is open to all.

Book Your Supported Day Out

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Hatfield Forest

Hatfield Forest is an ancient royal hunting ground with some trees over 1000 years old and 3,500 species of wildlife. The forest has a varied landscape of woodland, open meadows and water offering lots of opportunities to stimulate the senses and boost well-being. Take in the smells and colours of wildflowers, watch the birds on the lake, and enjoy the peace of the woodlands.

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Hyde Hall

You don’t have to be a gardener to enjoy this stunning variety of garden landscapes as there’s something for everyone. From the perfumed rose garden, to the colourful herbaceous borders to the Queen Mother’s garden. Hyde Hall offers a relaxed and peaceful space.

Spot the fish in the tranquil ponds, learn about crops from all corners of the globe in the vegetable garden and enjoy the charm of the cottage garden.

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Hylands Park

Hylands Park is a prestigious grade II listed public park encompassing 574 acres of historic parkland in the grounds of Hylands House. Offering an expanse of grassland and formal gardens to immerse yourself in, it’s the perfect place to relax and unwind and enjoy the array of colour and smells of the surrounding flora.

beach and huts

Frinton-on-Sea

Frinton-on-Sea is a favourite seaside spot on the Essex coastline with a reputation for gentility and cleanliness. 

Let the smell of the salty air evoke memories of days gone by, and lift your mood, whatever the weather.

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Goldhanger Creek

Goldhanger creek on the Blackwater estuary offers a peaceful landscape to relax and unwind by the water. Watch the birds take flight and follow the boats exploring the riverscape and have a leisurely stroll along the seawall, taking in the views of Osea Island across the water.

Autumn Trees

Markshall Estate

Markshall Estate is in the heart of the Essex countryside and offers a variety of landscapes. It’s the perfect place to relax and unwind surrounded by serene scenery. Discover over 1,000 years of history, explore ancient woodland and visit new continents in its world-class Arboretum.

wellies on lamb

Wellies On Care Farm, nr Colchester

Based at Butterfly Lodge in the heart of the Essex countryside, a visit to Wellies On will feed all your senses with the sights and smells of a working farm. With their collection of friendly animals, both big and small, you will be able to participate in some of the tasks involved in the everyday running of the farm.

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Langdon Hills Country Park

Langdon Hills Country Park has wonderful ancient woodlands dating back to prehistoric times, with flower-rich grassland meadows. With a network of accessible footpaths in the Westley Heights area, you can meander through nature and take in the sounds of the wildlife and enjoy stimulating all of your senses.

Can You Help?

If you are based in Essex and interested in supporting one of our adventures as a volunteer, please let us know.

For more information, to make an enquiry or booking, please contact us or call us on 01245 237548.

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