The Whole Street of Support (WSoS), is an initiative which focused on Mapesbury and South Kilburn, two areas of Brent where CADBrent had local knowledge and connections. The intention was to explore how people in the community could contribute to making the place dementia friendly. The aim was an environment where people with dementia could feel safe, confident and enabled to maintain their independence and even maximize their existing abilities.
The WSoS involved a multidisciplinary team, comprising service providers, residents and council members inspired by a design facilitator from Innovation Unit. The designer helped the team explore and prototype different ideas, engaging with community organisations, local businesses and especially people living with dementia. They tested different ways of engaging potential activists who might drive initiatives forward across the community. Scouts, hairdressers, faith groups and housing associations showed particular interest and were willing to learn how to make a difference in their different capacities within the area.
Awareness of dementia and what dementia friendly means has increased locally. Organisations and local businesses are working in partnership towards a common goal. There is much more to be done but the foundations have been set to empower residents and people living with dementia to bring about positive change. In particular WSoS is contributing what has been learned to influencing the design of services and space in the regeneration that is taking place in the area of South Kilburn.