A resident of a Sunrise Senior Living community, Ann Johnson, will share her experiences of living with dementia at the 27th Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI) Conference in London this weekend.
Ann, who has been living with the disease for six years, will join high profile speakers such as Sir Terry Pratchett, Fiona Phillips and Ray Winstone on the conference stage on 9th and 10th March.
A former lecturer in nursing, Ann was diagnosed with early onset dementia in 2005 at just 52 years of age. She took the decision two and half years ago to move into the Sunrise of Hale Barns in Cheshire, which provides residential and dementia care, to ensure she would get all of the support that she needed.
Determined to raise awareness of the disease and break the taboos associated with it, Ann now gives talks across the country and has become a ‘beacon of hope’ for other sufferers.
Ann has already appeared on BBC Breakfast, Sky News and the Today Programme and has a busy conference schedule ahead of her for the rest of the year, starting with this week’s event.
The Alzheimer’s Disease International Conference is an annual event aimed at raising global awareness of the disease. Ann will be travelling to London to speak on a range of subjects, including how simple technologies such as Dictaphones and audio books are having a transformative effect on her daily life.
Speaking ahead of the conference, Ann said:
“We need to start talking openly and honestly about dementia, as more people are affected by it.
“I will be telling people at the ADI conference that they should not to be afraid of dementia sufferers; love us for who we are and understand what we are experiencing.
“Life does not end at dementia diagnosis; I know I am still living life to the full and others are too”
Talking about Ann, General Manager of Sunrise of Hale Barns, Mary Kelly, added:
“Ann is an inspiration to us all at Sunrise of Hale Barns and we could not be more proud of her.
“The work she is doing to raise awareness of dementia is vital and our team support her every step of the way.”