To mark World Alzheimer's Day on 21 September, we are highlighting how Premier League clubs reach out and engage with people living with dementia and carers in their local communities.
Since 2016, Burnley in the Community (BitC), Burnley's charitable foundation, have been running the No Nay Never Forget dementia cafe, which provides a comfortable and supportive environment where people with dementia and their carers can come together and share experiences.
There have been over 150 participants supported since the group began and one of them is Jane, a former midwife who has had dementia for the last two years.
"It helps you get out," she says. "It's just a lovely little group. It makes you laugh."
The weekly sessions, run in partnership with Alzheimer's Society, involve quizzes, dancing, music and games, as well as giving carers and people with dementia a chance to get information, advice and talk to others in a similar situation.
"It's important for Burnley FC to raise the awareness of dementia and how it affects people," says Martin Payne, BitC's health and wellbeing coordinator.
"Our relationship with the Alzheimer's Society has been fantastic since day one. They are with us on a regular basis.
"We're always learning. We want to improve this group, we want this group to be the best it can be and I think we can only do that with professionals, with Alzheimer's Society. I can't speak highly enough of them."
Sport United Against Dementia
In 2020, the Premier League joined the Sport United Against Dementia campaign, which Alzheimer's Society has created to bring together multiple UK sports to tackle dementia and also aims to generate funds and awareness of the condition.
The League is working with Alzheimer's Society to create dementia-friendly clubs by building awareness of dementia and breaking down stigma. It will enable people affected by the condition to remain part of the game and continue enjoying and supporting the clubs they love.
"Getting a diagnosis is quite daunting for most people," says Amanda Boult, Alzheimer's Society dementia connect local services manager. "Most people will put that off thinking, 'What's the point? There's no help, there's no support.'
"But there absolutely is and this group showcases that."