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Mayor's Charity - Tenterden Memory Café

Each year, the newly elected Mayor of Tenterden choose a charity for fund raising through events.

Mayor Cllr John Crawford has chosen Tenterden Memory Café which provides an informal setting for those people living with dementia and dementia related illnesses, their family and carers.

Tenterden Memory Café is a volunteer led organisation, has been in existence for six years, and has built up a renowned reputation which draws visitors with Tenterden and the wider Ashford Brough.

It meets in St Andrew Catholic Church Community Hall every Friday afternoon between 2pm and 4pm.

They provide tea and cakes, regular music entertainment, quizzes and bingo. Volunteers engage with those living with dementia allowing carers to interact with others in similar situations. The carers, many of whom are elderly with their own medical and physical issues share experiences and coping mechanisms and are able to have a “normal conversation” with friends. It is a fun experience for all where everybody is jovial and generally enjoying the occasion.

As volunteers they do not offer medical advice, but have the necessary contacts to refer those in need of help and advice to the appropriate organisation.

Every Monday Short Mat Bowls is held at Tenterden Leisure Centre which provided natural social interaction, gentle physical exercise, and stimulates cognitive skills. On a monthly basis lunch is held at The Little Silver County Hotel. Last but not least, Tenterden Memory Café organise days out. In April this year they went to Eastbourne by coach and had lunch in a sea front hotel, this outing will be repeated later in the year.

Recently Mayor John Crawford accompanied by with wife Mayoress Crawford attended the Tuesday “Musical Memories” which is held every Tuesday morning at Highbury Hall. There is a lot of exuberant singing which is not only good fun, but is scientifically proven to promote good health and a feel-good factor. Songs included “Country Roads”, “Love me Tender”, “Moon River” and on to more exuberant songs like “Nellie the Elephant”

Mayor Cllr John Crawford said: “he had not enjoyed himself singing so much for a long time. It was wonderful to see the jubilance and smiles on everybody’s faces.”

Jan Bridger said” It is a great honour that this years Tenterden Mayor, Councillor John Crawford has chosen to support Tenterden Memory Café and its associated activities to be his named charitable group. All visitors and volunteers thank him very much for this very kind gesture”.