A moving and beautifully illustrated book that captures the real life tales of people living with dementia, as told by their loved ones caring for them. This humorous, heartwarming and often heartbreaking collection will be relatable and supportive for anyone touched by dementia in their lives, and provides insight and information for anyone wanting to know more. The stories reflect on: the impact of receiving a diagnosis, the importance of person-centred care and social inclusion; the power of meaningful engagement, partnerships, peer support and much, much more.
I know of no other book in the dementia field like Gina Awad' s United. In seven deftly distilled life stories, each vividly illustrated to animate key moments in the narrative, Awad identifies the essential, take-home lessons of caring for a person with cognitive impairments in a variety of unique circumstances. The range of situations brought to life in United gives the reader a broad vista on different challenges posed by cognitive impairment, as well as different creative responses to those challenges. This book simultaneously instructs and inspires. In one sitting, one can gain a lifetime of insights -- Michael Verde, founder of Memory Bridge USA From the devastating moment of diagnosis to the years of isolation, grief and frustration, Gina Awad' s book is a must-read for all those caring for someone with dementia. Wonderfully illustrated by renowned cartoonist Tony Husband, it is easy to read yet exceptionally informative. Both Awad and Husband have personal experience of this cruel condition and it shows. United: Caring For Our Loved Ones Living With Dementia is a book written with love, gentle humour and fathomless insight. I can' t recommend it highly enough -- Pippa Kelly, award-winning dementia campaigner, journalist and podcaster A beautiful, stunning way to communicate the complexity of dementia while offering subtle tips on how we can understand how a person experiences the world and what we can do to help. United shows how life doesn' t stop when someone has dementia but also stresses the importance of relationships and what has helped people, such as connecting with dementia-related charities and communities. The diversity of experience is beautifully illustrated, leaving the reader immersed in the worlds of the individuals in the book. Highly emotive, memorable and informative, a very much needed book -- Dr Jane Mullins, dementia nurse specialist, author of ' Finding the Light in Dementia' United is THE most beautiful and impactful piece of work. I read it with tears in my eyes, not due to sadness, but due to overwhelming relief that finally all our journeys are now clearly and lovingly explained. Gina Awad has masterly woven the stories together and it makes for a very powerful read. She is a magician and I hope that those who find this book will extract the sense of hope from it at a time when all seems quite overwhelming -- Nicola Baker, daughter of Michael and Pam who both lived with dementia This lovely book brings to the life the lived experiences of people with dementia and carers. These personal stories portray the reality of living with dementia but each situation is peppered with hope, optimism and love. Gina and Tony have done a great job of bringing these day to day experiences to life so that we can all learn -- Rachael Litherland, director of Innovations in Dementia When dementia comes into your family, it changes life forever. This book, with its wonderful illustrations, is a helpful reminder that we are not alone. There are so many stories of people struggling along, trying to find some light even in the darkest of times. We should be proud as carers and people living with dementia that we are somehow muddling though. I hope this book raises awareness of all our journeys, all different but somehow connected -- Suzy Webster, daughter and carer of her mum Barbara, diagnosed with Alzheimer' s in 2012 We make sense of our lives using interlocking stories. In this book, Gina Awad has captured a series of vignettes, sharing stories of the lives of people living with dementia and their families. Sympathetically and extensively supported with illustrations by Tony Husband, United all too clearly demonstrates the hopes, fears, frustrations and disappointments and alerts us so clearly to the impact dementia has on the lives of so many people -- Dr David Kernick, GP As a former carer myself, I know that nothing impacts quite as much as reading about the lived experience of those caring for a loved one with dementia. The fact that all the stories not only showcase, sensitively, the challenges and issues surrounding a dementia diagnosis, but that they also highlight positive outcomes and illustrate practical solutions, with love, care and commitment running as a common thread through all of them, is heartwarming. The simplicity of the book in telling the carer stories is probably its greatest triumph -- Sarah Merriman, head of TIDE (Together In Dementia Everyday) delivery While this book does not skirt the difficulties of living with a diagnosis of dementia, it reminds us of what is most important in all relationships: empathy, caring, understanding, love and, for our carers, support and resilience. In this short but poignant book, Gina' s words and Tony' s illustrations beautifully and sweetly convey all of the above. This is a moving and highly effective format for raising awareness of some of the most difficult and painful issues while constantly affirming and nurturing the personhood of the people living with dementia and their carers -- Lynda Everman and Don Wendorf, PsyD, former caregivers, Alzheimer' s activists, senior editors of ' Dementia-Friendly Worship' and co-authors of ' Stolen Memories' This delightful and empowering book highlights how each person with dementia and their loved ones experience their own individual dementia encounter. It is a thought-provoking read and offers readers with no experience of dementia the opportunity to enter into the dementia world. For those that may have experience but struggle in a caring role, it offers hope and reassurance by providing practical tips and coping strategies. Each story offers a quirky person-centred approach on how to engage and bring out the best in each person by recognising their strengths and ability to see beyond their dementia diagnosis. It is a book of shared love stories, determination and adaptation by relatives in helping their loved ones have a positive experience whilst living with condition. In addition, it demonstrates the importance of how involving people with dementia to plan services in their community may continue to enhance their independence. A mesmerising read around the realities and challenges for all those affected by dementia and illustrated beautifully in cartoon form by the brilliant Tony Husband. I certainly learnt a lot -- Lorraine Burgess, Macmillan dementia nurse consultant It' s not easy to make dementia stories digestible. This beautiful book with illustrations by Tony Husband helps to give a slice of life for carers, families and those living with the disease. A disease which will affect 1 in 3 of us. Many people get a dementia diagnosis but then fail to get help and support in understanding the disease and how it affects those living with it. And those living with it include family, friends and work colleagues. By reading stories of others with warm, light illustrations to accompany it, we get an insight into real people and real situations. It will help elucidate to those who feel isolated dealing with dementia whilst reassuring them that there are others in the same boat. It hints at what is to come but it reminds us that, for the most part, dementia doesn' t rob us of everything. There is hope and unity in shared memories and experiences -- Denise Wilton, daughter and carer for her father living with dementia United is a must read for any one who has a connection with someone living with dementia and for any one who hasn' t, because the more information we know, the better our world can become more inclusive. This book is written with gentleness and honesty and the illustrations are super. Humility and humour go hand in hand in this book. It is wonderful -- Philippa Hodge, community carer
Gina Awad has been involved in making a difference for people living with dementia and their loved ones for over 10 years. As well as becoming the Alzheimer' s Society' s Dementia Friends Champion of the Year in 2016, and forming the Exeter Dementia Action Alliance, she was also awarded a British Empire Medal for her voluntary services to people with dementia in Devon in 2018. Gina has a BSc in Health & Social Care, is a qualified counsellor, reflexologist and coach, and gained great experience when she was awarded a scholarship to the Memory Bridge Training Retreat at The Tibetan Mongolian Buddhist Cultural Center, in Bloomington, Indiana. Gina has personal experience of family and friends living with dementia and hosts a quarterly radio show on Phonic 106. 8 FM ' Living Better with Dementia' . The illustrator Tony Husband is an award winning cartoonist who works for Private Eye and other publications. His book Take Care, Son about his father' s dementia led him into the dementia world.
|2 Jun 2022
|Little, Brown Book Group
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