A Doncaster safari park’s bid to make their wildlife experience better for visitors with dementia has been praised by a senior doctor, who has urged other businesses to follow their lead.
Yorkshire Wildlife Park, which is expected to attract 450,000 visitors this year, organised awareness-raising Dementia Friends training for staff working at the 70 acre walkthrough adventure to help them understand what it’s like to live with the disease.
Rossington GP Dr Ayesha Zafar, who has special responsibility at Doncaster Clinical Commissioning Group for dementia care, said: “I’m delighted the wildlife park has recognised the importance of dementia awareness training so workers know how to look after visitors who have the disease.
“It’s the simple things that can make a difference, such as being aware and considerate when people are having difficulty communicating what they want to buy in the café or shop.”
Over 20 staff took part in the training and YWP human resources manager, Clare Pearson, said: “Our visitors span the generations, from very young to very old and they have a lot of interaction with our employees. We felt it was important that our staff were able to recognise the tell-tale signs of dementia so they can give a bit of extra help if they need it.”