A Good Life with Dementia

Red & Yellow Care / Alzheimer’s Society

By identifying the key principles that make all of our lives fulfilling – and extending these into how we care for people with dementia – we challenged policy-makers, service designers and frontline carers to re-think how they support people to live well with dementia.

Following a series of award-winning design research studies for Red & Yellow Care, we were invited by our client – in partnership with Alzheimer’s Society – to share our ground-breaking thinking on dementia in a major new report.

Challenging orthodox narratives about dementia, the report outlined the six key principles by which people with dementia can continue to lead fulfilling lives for as long as possible: championing what they can still do, rather than what they can’t.

The report built on what we’d learnt while helping Red & Yellow Care re-think residential dementia care – projects that revealed how the systemic negativity of much current care provision can actually accelerate the onset of dementia.

But it also took inspiration from other fields. By reflecting on what makes any of our lives worthwhile – risk, agency, contrast – we developed a counter-narrative to the status quo: clear-thinking that cut through well-worn excuses, and re-defined the task facing those charged with meeting the Prime Minister’s ‘Dementia Challenge’.

The report was launched the House of Lords to a national audience of journalists, innovation experts and dementia professionals. After gaining widespread attention across national press, TV and radio, it’s since become an invaluable point of reference for policy-makers, service designers and frontline workers alike.