Saturday, 31 March 2012

Thank You for the Letters, Sharing, Re -Tweets and the Support

Hi
I would just like to say a big thank you to all who have helped this wee awareness campaign, I am grateful for the help and support I receive
As a son caring full time for my mum, running a campaign from my bedroom and having only 22 hours a week to work on this campaign, the help and support I get inspires me
Thank you for sending letters, inviting me to talks, for re tweeting my thoughts, for sharing my film, for sharing my blog (a badly punctuated blog for that I apologies) for raising awareness, bust mostly thank you for caring ,thank you for caring against all odds for someone you love
But for me my biggest thanks goes to Joan Whitelaw my we mum for this is her campaign, dementia has taken many things from my mum but not the gift of helping others that’s what she gives  me the reason and strength to carry on, this is not my campaign this is our campaign this campaign is for every Joan whitelaw who suffers and for every family member who loves and cares

Thank you
,

Dementia, my Mum and Me

Good Morning  
I have been caring for my wee mum Joan for nearly 5 years now. As a son I struggle to witness on a daily basis Dementia doing its best to try and take away the greatness in my mum
I stand beside my mum fighting to stop dementia taking its toll on me also, I was sitting the other day having a rare private quiet moment and thought what has happened to us The last 5  years seem lost in the fog of dementia and caring our life’s have stood still in so many ways. What happened to us to  my kind hard working helpful thoughtful mum we like most of the people who face dementia have become isolated from friends ,family and society And I believe the reason for this along with the struggles dementia brings is that wider society has no understanding ,many professionals have to little understanding .Last year when I started my campaign ,a campaign that is a cry for help ,and to ask the question why do we live like this why does no one understand ,I was shocked to find so many people facing greater struggles than us .How could that be how can people be facing greater challenges than us .that shocked me I though we had it bad till I started meeting and collecting letters from others
We as a society have to start talking about dementia and caring, I feel dementia has to be discussed in a new way, we as a society have to ask question and learn more
The numbers facing dementia will only increase that’s why I collect life stories, nothing will change until the wider public start learning and talking about dementia
I don’t want anyone in the future to face the struggles we and too many people I meet face
Dementia brings with it many heartbreaking and tragic things we at this time cannot change, but we can change attitudes, understanding and awareness
Help me raise awareness share your story for me to take to parliament when I return on may 8th ,help others who will face what we face or have faced in the past
Do not suffer alone or in silence .At this time we have no cure for dementia but we can cure systems, attitudes and understanding
Tommy  

Friday, 30 March 2012

Alzheimers Association of San Diego Thank You


Hi

Thank you Alzheimer's Association of San Diego/Imperial Counties for shairng my film and the comments

tommy

Positive Meeting with NHS Community Engagement Team Today



Hi

I had a very positive and encouraging meeting today with Daniel from the NHS Community Engagement Team
As mentioned before Daniel organised a talk, showing of the film and question and answer session with some department heads
I feel positive about the good feedback but more thank that this is really the basis, heart and soul of this campaign. Carers like me being given good opportunities to talk openly about dementia ,caring and how we feel and live and being given the chance to do that to people who work in the care sector and who  are open to listening .This is a great step forward, I feel positive and look forward to working on the ideas we discussed and moving  forward .we also discussed my film being used on some NHS sites to show the carers experience

A good day for awareness campaigning

Tommy

Dementia and Caring in Glasgow Let Me Know You’re Thoughts

Hi
Back in February I had a cross party motion passed at Glasgow city council based on my awareness campaign and the letters I receive, to look at dementia and caring in Glasgow. The motion passed agrees to put together a report and action plan on all aspects of dementia and caring under the cover of Glasgow City Council .I will be a member of this cross party group, The group will be formed after the local elections in May, you’re thoughts and opinions will play a big part in the discussions and form the basis of this report
Please e mail or get in touch with any point of view, ideas or issues to help us bring more understanding and help to all who are suffering with Dementia   or caring for a loved on with
You can e mail me direct at tommy@i-woz-there.com
I would like to extend thanks to John Flanagan who raised this motion for me along with David McDonald,Matt Kerr for supporting and the whole city council for passing the said motion .This is a great opportunity for us to share our thoughts and opinions’ and get the help we deserve and need, we as carers and families know better than anyone the struggles we face caring for a loved one .while on the subject of caring in Glasgow I would also like to say thank to Stephen Fitzpatrick Ann Cummings from SW  for their interest in this campaign and our thoughts and opinions and look forward to our next meeting
  
Tommy

Meeting NHS Community Engagement Team Today To Update On Progress


Hi
I will be meeting Daniel from the NHS Community  Engagement Team today for feedback on my talk a few weeks ago to the Operating Division’s Patient Focus & Public Involvement steeringGroup.
Daniel organised the talk a few weeks ago and we will be discussing how we can take things forward .I have already had contact with some of the people who attended and we are looking at ways for me to do more talks within the NHS..My hope is to do as many talks as I can within the care sector about Dementia caring for my mum, the letters I receive and the people I meet on my awareness campaign along with showing my wee film .I firmly believe speaking as a son and carer is the best way to bring more understanding on dementia and life caring for a loved one to the people who work and supply the care we need and get
I feel hearing how we live and cope from people like me who are caring or have cared in the past has more impact than any training film or talk used ,We as carers  can tell the true expreince of caring and the needs of the loved ones we care for and I am grateful for the opportunities coming my way at this time
Tommy

Thursday, 29 March 2012

Alzheimer Nederland Thank You,


Good Evening

Thank you Alzheimer Nederland for sharing my film and blog on you’re Facebook page and for the kind comments
If you are reading this you can help me raise awareness by sharing my film and blog at the links below

Thank you

 Tommy
Son, Full Time Carer, Awareness campaigner

Carr Gomm Forum Today

Hi
It was quite an emotional day today ,I was a guest speaker at the Carr Gomm forum at the Palace of Art Glasgow , This was also the first place involved in caring I approached to hang a poster up about my campaign to collect letters ,and the first place last year I was given the opportunity to speak about my campaign at an event .Carr Gomm have an office at the top of my street and Irene ,Christine and all the team have become good friends since the day I walked in their door and help me emotionally and with basic things like photocopying etc .things that I cant do from my bedroom or afford too . As with last year there was a great turn out and Christine had everything looking great for the guests (thank you for the amazing display on all the articles etc about my campaign)
Much has changed since my talk there last year but there is still so much to do in raising awareness on dementia and the life carers and families lead. Tomorrow will be the same as yesterday and today caring for my mum as best I can and using the 22 hours free time I have a week to raise awareness in a positive manner
Thank you all for inviting me back
Tommy
I will add some photos later

Launch of the DSDC Virtual Care



HI

Please see below a link to the dementia centre at Iris Murdoch Building University of Stirling ,this was one of my stop offs last June when I launched my campaign with a walk round Scottish Towns and Cities ,I was made very welcome by June ,Juanita and all the team who gave me a wee tour of the building and the work they do
On 20th March broadcaster and presenter Sally Magnusson cut the ribbon on the DSDC’s Virtual Care Home, which is now open to visitors on our website See photos and clips and link to the resource from our homepage http://dementia.stir.ac.uk
There are seven care home room views with information panels to highlight features of good practice in dementia-friendly design. This development was sponsored by the Nominet Trust and designed by Architects Burnett Pollock Associates

 

Speaking Today at Carr Gomm Forum

Hi
I will be one of the guest speakers at the Carr Gomm Forum at the Palace of Art in Glasgow.
As mentiond before this was the first event I had the chance to speak at about my awareness campaign this time last year ,I will update more when i return from this event
Tommy

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Thank You Alzheimer’s Society for Sharing My Film and Blog

Hi
A big thank you to Alex and all at the Alzheimer’s society for sharing my film and campaign on their Facebook page ,thank you also for the kind comments from the people who have viewed the film ,I would also like to say a special thank to the amazing people in my wee film who showed great strength and courage in telling their stories in order to help others
We all need to join hands to raise awareness on this tragic illness and for the families affected
Tommy

Dementia, Caring, Letters and Life Stories,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

re-post

Good Morning
As a son, carer, and would be awareness campaigner, I have spent the last months asking people to share their experiences, living with and caring for a loved one with dementia
And I am sure many will ask can a letter or e mail change a life or raise awareness and understanding
Before I came  home to visit my mum a few years ago after traveling around the world with my job, a visit  home that shocked and changed our lives I was just getting over the break up from  my then long term girlfriend .we both traveled with our jobs and for a long time my then girlfriend kept telling me things had to change and every time she told me or tried to tell me ,I always seemed to talk my way out  of changing ,I always seemed to say when I get home in a few months we will talk about it and things will be ok .
The more she shouted , tried to talk to me or asked for me to listen and understand  the less I heard
Then one day I was going away for 4 months and when I arrived at my destination I opened my suitcase to find a letter, on reading that letter I understood everything my girlfriend had been trying to tell me, I understood why we had to part and I understood why I had to change and I understood as much as we loved each other we had to go our separate ways.
My heart was broken but she was right ,
So a letter changed my life, and I believe our letters and life stories can at the very least bring more understanding on how we feel and live
So I will answer the question can our letters and life stories change lives, I believe they can

Tommy

Lewy Body Dementia Association .Georgia Alabama Thank You

Good Morning ,
Thank you to Angela from the Lewy Body Dementia Association .Georgia Alabama for making contact and the kind word about my campaign and film
As mentioned before my wee mum Joan has Vascular Dementia and the more I campaign the more aware I become of others This is the reason I campaign to try and bring more understanding on dementia to the wider public,on the life we lead and the struggles we face ,I will be speaking to Angela over the next week about my campaign and to learn more of the work they do ,I had a very inspiring meeting yesterday with some students from GSA and feel very positive about my planned dementia and caring through art project ,And last but by no means least looking forward to speaking at the Carr Gomm forum tomorrow ,back to the forum and place of  first of the first  talk I ever done on dementia awareness. caring for my mum and my campaign
Tommy  

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Dementia Today California Thank You from Scotland

A big thank you to Jenifer and all at dementia today for the kind words and all you do in raising awareness

Meet Tommy Whitelaw: an Alzheimer’s Hero

Tommy Whitelaw, from Scotland, sent me an email on Twitter about his campaign across his country to raise awareness on Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Here is Tommy’s statement from his website http://tommy-on-tour-2011.blogspot.com/2012/03/tommyontour-film-now-on-website-around.html

FRIDAY, 9 MARCH 2012

I’ve added Tommy’s short film, presented to Deputy First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon at the Scottish Parliament, to the right-hand column of my webpage.  It is called Video of the Week: Tommy on Tour. The film is about Tommy’s campaign to raise awareness for people with dementia and their carers. Please watch the video, visit Tommy’s website, and support Tommy on this courageous fight against this awful disease.
You can also a watch the film here or forward the URL to other people to watch.
Tommy is my hero; he is also your hero too

tommy

Dementia, Caring, Letters and Life Stories

Good Morning
Well it’s a beautiful day here today in Scotland as I sit looking out the window I cant help thinking of all the little things my mum or I would have done on such a beautiful day .
The thing is we cant Dementia has changed that the weather does not determine what we do, Dementia decides everything we do living as a carer decides everything we do
Now what to do on a sunny day is way way down the list of importance in caring for my mum, its what we can’t do anymore that hurts its all the things dementia has taken away from my amazing we mum .Every day we sit I here I grow more determined to raise awareness, every cant do makes me more determined to raise awareness
As I said from day one our story alone is not enough, ALL OUR STORIES together now that just might be enough to tackle issues and bring more help, understanding and awareness
You can help you can share you’re story, you can share my blog or you can share my film below
Help me raise awareness on this tragic illness and the impact it has on families all across the world
Tommy and his wee mum Joan
life stories tommy@i-woz-there.com
Short film shown at parliament http://tv.enterprisescreen.co.uk/watch?v=347

Monday, 26 March 2012

Meet the Carers, Collecting Letters Raising Awareness

Hi
Just watched the programme MEET THE CARERS very moving and just reminds me how we/ I live as carers ,Try not to think about myself caring for my mum as its to painful and that was difficult to watch tonight as I saw many things that sum up my own life loneliness ,isolation amongst many other emotions  
Anyway my heart goes out to the families in the programme and makes me more determined to collect letters and life stories from families and carers to highlight and bring more help and understanding on caring for a loved one
I raise awareness on dementia but I am a carer and have been for nearly 5 years now. You can help me AND others by sending you’re story for me to take to parliament on may 9th
Tommy

Social Care Ideas Factory Thank You,

Hi

A big thanks to all at the social care ideas factory for promoting my campaign on their website and Facebook, I will be visiting their Art of Living Lifestyle show in April

You can get details at the links below

Once again thank you for helping me raise awareness

Social Care Ideas Factory (SCIF) is a membership network committed to creating successful co-produced 'supporting casts' of people, connections and partnerships to lead and craft responses to the transformative social care and change agenda and outcomes.

www.socialcareideasfactory.com/

Tommy

Glasgow School of Art, Meeting Some Students Tomorrow,

Hi
Feeling positive about my idea to present the thoughts of families and carers who have written to me and I have met on my tour through Art
I am really inspired by the students who answered my plea to help, and hope if we can get ideas and direction together I can then go out and get some funding to put this exhibition on I believe a project like this can bring more understanding on dementia and the impact it has on families and across society I salute the students for their  willingness to get involved and help raise awareness in a positive manner
Tommy

Assisted Living Pennsylvania USA Phone Interview Today

Hi
I will be doing a phone interview with assisted living today, they help with many aspects of care across  America .The interview about caring for my mum and my campaign will be  put  on their sites and blogs ,I will add a link to the interview once done and available
I am amazed at the coverage of this campaign in so many countries including Australia, Canada and many more
Tommy

Sunday, 25 March 2012

City of Glasgow College Staff and Students, Awareness Ideas,

City of Glasgow College Staff and Students, Awareness Ideas,
A massive thanks to Scott ,Marjory ,Joan from City of Glasgow College for their enthusiasm and ideas for taking forward awareness razing, since my talk to social care and media students a few weeks ago .I  look forward to returning to work with them and the amazing students many of whom have made contact via Facebook and twitter since my presentation .I feel the thoughts and opinions of futures care sector and media employees will add great value to this campaign and help bring more understanding on dementia and the struggles families face on a daily basis
Thank you all
Tommy

PRT, South Ayrshire Carers Centre, Apologies

Hi
I would like to say sorry to the South Ayrshire Carers Centre for having to cancel my trip on Wednesday due to unforeseen circumstances to meet the group and talk about my awareness campaign
Over the last year this is the first talk I have had to cancel and I hope we can reschedule before I go back to parliament in may
It’s important I continue to meet as many carers as possible to hear their thoughts and opinions to help paint a picture on living with and caring for a loved on suffering with dementia
we cant bring help and raise understanding unless we really listen to what families and carers feel and think ,so i will make sure i get down to Ayrshire soon to meet more families and carers
Sorry
Tommy

Saturday, 24 March 2012

Lewy body Dementia,

Hi
My wee mum has vascular dementia, I was sent this via my Facebook today and thought I would share as I witness on a daily  basis the struggles that vascualr dementia brings and we should not forget others who also need help
Spread awareness of Lewy Body Dementia. Lewy Body Disease is the second most common form of dementia in older people.UK Reg Charity: 1114579website: www.lewybody.orgemail: info@lewybody.orgTelephone: 0131 473 2385 Address: Hudson
We are the only UK-based charity dedicated solely to Lewy Body Dementia, or Dementia with Lewy Bodies. We aim to support and inform carers, sufferers and the general public about this tragic disease. DLB is often misdiagnosed as other forms of dementia, which can lead to the condition of sufferers worsening. tommy
House8 Albany Street
, EdinburghEH1 3QB.

Carr Gomm, Back to Where it All Began,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

Hi
I will be speaking at the Carr Gomm Forum this Thursday,this was the first group involved in caring that I had contact with and the first place I ever got the chance to talk about my campaign and speak. at an organised event
Last year when I started this campaign I printed my own T-shirts , posters along with producing key rings to raise awareness. The shops at the top of my street really got behind and I am so thankful for that .Anyway Carr Gomm have an office at the top of my street amongst the shops, I walked in one day to ask if I could hang up a wee poster. This has produced a great friendship the staff are amazingly helpful and encouraging and invited me to speak at their forum last year to promote my awareness campaign.More than that Irene Edgar has become a good friend and supporter and over the last year has sent me a letter, accompanied me to Parliament appeared in my film and amazingly her son composed the music for the film On a personal note its great to know  Irene’s door is always opened to help if I need advice on caring for my mum or a friend to chat with ,I don’t use this offer as much as  I could ,but just knowing I can is a great help. An amazing friendship all because of asking to hang a poster up one day .so it’s a true privilege to be asked to speak again at this years forum to update on the progress since my first very nervous and very short talk a year ago
This whole campaign was built on the amazing help and community spirit from shops I go into on a daily basis they wore my shirts hung up my posters put articles from newspapers in the windows and I truly found the confidence to reach out further and was inspired by the people who run the shops and offices in my local area
Tommy  

Friday, 23 March 2012

Dementia Awareness ,A Positive End to the Week

Hi
If felt t like a good day today,I had an encouraging meeting once again with social work and adult services leads ,we had a chat about a wide range of things covering dementia and the care of people facing dementia and how this awareness campaign can be helpful along the way .Also had a call from Scott who chaired my talk set up by Daniel Connelly from the NHS community engagement team at the southern general hospital last week to say he is working on ways to set up talks for me to do at colleges and with students studying to work in the care sector
I will update more on this later
Tommy

Dementia, Our Life Stories Can Help Others …………………

HI
I meet with the Deputy First Minister Again on May 9th to update and discuss the people I meet on this tour and hand over more letters I receive.
We have a great opportunity to tell our story to a health minister who is listening, our stories, and our life stories can help bring more understanding on how we feel and live caring for a loved suffering with dementia, dementia does always allow  happy endings so here’s one we can be part of our life stories helped others .now I for one believe that’s an ending to our story we can others with.In amongst the heartbreak and tragedy we face, we can help others
Please help others, share you’re life story help decision makers who at this moment are listening help them understand how we feel ,guide them to a better future for all
Share you’re story do not let this chance slip away ,we as carers sit in silence to long, take a chance to help others

Tommy

Dementia our Life Stories, Thoughts and Opinions

Good Morning
I have been caring for my mum for nearly five years now and raising awareness for just over one Looking back I sit broken hearted watching dementia taking over both my mums and my own life .Every week I meet families struggling to cope as we do ,I see and feel everyday all that dementia brings .In amongst this tragedy I feel privileged to have met the amazing families and carers who have faced or are  facing this tragic illness and all the comes  with it .Like them I ask and hope that our loved one are given the best care available and treated with the respect and dignity they deserve There are many people out there doing great things to help us and we should never forget that,at the same time there is to large a percentage of people who have no understanding of dementia and the toll it takes on families and their loved ones ..This is the reason I collect life stories from families affected, I want to use them to try and raise awareness and bring a clearer understanding on how we live and  feel , in my case why I cry myself to sleep most nights.
I have hopes and concerns ,my hopes and my reason to keep campaigning is that we have a Deputy First  /Health Minister who is reading out stories and listening to us.

That gives me hope
 
That’s why I believe in life stories I believe we as carers  and families can describe best and  show all how we live and feel ,we can represent dementia or any  reason we care better than anyone
We have a chance to tell out story lets not waste it

Thomas whitelaw
Son, carer would be campaigner

Tommy

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Meeting With Social Work and Adult Services Tomorrow

Hi
I will be meeting with social works and adult services leads tomorrow ,This will be my third meeting and I am encouraged by their interest in the thoughts of carers and families who live with dementia and care for a loved one As this campaign grows and I learn more  its worth remembering that a lots of the good services available get funding from SW  a few months ago when my mum had problems attending day care my own social worker was quick to act and supplied the emergency funding needed to pay for my Alzheimer Scotland befrienders along with giving emotional support .I would also like to thank my local carer group who over the last week have been helping with an evaluation of both my mum and own care ,This leads me back to what I have said all along there are many things we all need to be put in place to keep pace with all that dementia brings but not knowing or having access to help that is already  available is tragedy  we need to work on and work on quickly

Tommy

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Speaking at EastRenfrewshire carers and Age Concern Dementia Centre Joint Event Today

Hi
 I was over at the EastRenfrewshire carers and Age Concern Dementia Centre Joint coffee morning today talking about my campaign, caring for my mum and collecting letters
Big thanks to Mark and Kina for organizing hosting and inviting local families, carers and friends to come and hear about the Tommyontour campaign .I would like to say a big thank you to all who attended and for the letters recieved today .I hope as with all the letters and life stories i receive they will help paint a picture of living with dementia and caring for a loved one
 
Tommy

Please Read Sally Magnusson’s articles about her mum Mamie and dementia from today’s Herald and Mail

hi  
Please see below links to the articles sally Magnusson had in today’s Scottish Daily Mail and the Herald about her mother and dementia
I have had the privilege of meeting sally and I share her heartbreak as son caring for my own mother

Help Me Raise Awareness on Dementia

Hi
This is me and my wee mum Joan ,my wee mum has vascular dementia and I am her full time carer ,you can help the 10s of thousands of people who struggle with dementia in Scotland  and the families who struggle to witness and care for  a loved one with dementia  ,I don’t raise money only awareness and understanding
You can share my film and blog at the links below, a cut a paste and a share that’s raising awareness ticked for today if you do that
Tommy and Joan   
twitter @tommyntour

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Assisted Living Today USA interview

Hi
Big thanks to Tom and Brenda from Assisted Living Today  for getting in touch I sent my film and blog and they have got in touch to arrange a phone interview about caring for my mum and the campaign, I will put a link up to the interview once we have done it
Please see a wee bit about them and a link
Assisted Living Today is a Web publishing site that offers news and information about senior living, elderly care, and memory care topics, and also helps those interested in finding senior housing (ie assisted living facilities, etc.). We have a number of resources your readers might find interesting/useful here: http://assistedlivingtoday.com/p/resources/.

Tommy

Glasgow School of Art Inspiring …………..

A massive thank you to all the students from Glasgow school of art who answered my plea to look into the possibility of doing  An Art  exhibition on my campaign and the letters ,I feel this would be a great way of raising awareness ,Now I have people interested in working on the project its time to go out get some funding and make it happen. I hope to do a day that will help bring comfort, inspiration and understanding to all families who attend along with raising awareness to a wider public..I hope national carer groups will get involved to on site to supply advice and support
I will update more once I meet with people who can help make this happen
Tommy  

Dementia, Exhibition of Letters through Art ……………………….

Good Morning ,,,,
Thanks to all who have got in touch already to support and offer help on my idea of holding  an exhibition on the words ,feelings and thoughts within the letters I receive
There are many words and thoughts repeated within the letters and I feel having them interpreted through art will  help tell the story of living with dementia and caring for a loved one ,I hope if can get the backing, to make this a day for families to get together and learn about dementia ,along with putting in place educational and help desks for anyone concerned or needing advice ,I hope  national and local carer groups will get involved to set up stands showing the work they do along with SW and NHS
It’s a big ask at the moment but I am determined to pull this off and put on a day that inspires. And comforts families
Tommy

Monday, 19 March 2012

East Renfrewshire Carers and Age Concern Dementia Centre Eastwood Talk on Thursday

Hi
Big thanks to all concerned for organizing the joint coffee morning and chance for me to talk about my awareness campaign this coming Thursday the 22nd
I met with Mark and Kina last month and they have kindly put the Coffee morning together to give me a chance to meet and talk with families they are in contact with
I look forward to meeting them all on Thursday morning
Tommy  

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Dementia Awareness Week Project, Can You Help?

Hi
Looking for help from any art colleges or students out there, I want to do an exhibition on Dementia, the letters ,the people I have met on my tour along with the words and thoughts of families and carers ,I hope to do this in a city centre location
At the very early stages of planning so all ideas welcome
Looking for some art students with a kind heart and a passion to display the words and thoughts of carers across Scotland along with raising awareness on this tragic illness
Dementia awareness week is mid June so looking into possibilities, finding sponsors and creative minds to pull this off with me
Tommy

Caring For a Loved One with Dementia ………….

Good Morning ...
I have cared for my amazing wee mum for nearly five years now and as with most we have faced many struggles, this tour has allowed me to meet amazing, loving, caring people all across the country.
I want use the information, thoughts and opinions from all the carer groups, professionals and families I meet to do a paper on caring for a loved one to hand into both government and local authorities across Scotland, I feel  we have a great opportunity to do this as the deputy first minister and my own head of adult services in Glasgow are keen to hear our thoughts .my story is not enough you can help and be part of this great opportunity to describe living with and caring for a loved one with dementia
I also want to promote the good services that already exist in the hope it encourages other to go and get the help already in place and they deserve
Please help. get in touch share you’re story tell me about services in place that bring comfort and help to you, lets work on the negatives and promote the positives and celebrate the good help and service we have so others can know about and access them
4 years ago I did not know what help was available and even when I did was uncomfortable with asking for help,I don’t want others to live the way we lived ,I want them to know about  help they can get and let them know as a son and carer the difference a little bit of help and UNDERSTANDING  can make to you’re life
There are many things I personally wish where in place to bring help and comfort, but for me not knowing or having access to help that already exists is a tragedy in itself

Tommy

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Collecting Letters Raising Awareness, Please Help

Hi
My name is Tommy whitelaw and I have cared for my mum for 5 years,she has Dementia ,I started a campaign last year collecting  letters and life stories and now take those letters every three months to the Scottish Parliament ,our Deputy first minister has shown great interest in our life stories and we meet again in May to discuss the content
And I for one am grateful for this opportunity
If you would like to send you’re experience of dementia GOOD or BAD you can e mail me @ tommy@i-woz-there.com .if you would like to help me raise awareness you can share my film at the link below
Help paint a picture of living with dementia or caring for a loved one with dementia, youre letters will help bring more understanding for all who face this tragic illness
Tommy
Short film shown at parliament http://tv.enterprisescreen.co.uk/watch?v=347

Friday, 16 March 2012

Tommyontour Itinerary March, April 2012

Hi
Please see below awareness plans and talks coming up, so far…………………….

I will also be announcing soon plans for dementia awareness week 2012

March 22ND Meeting carers age concern dementia centre and east Renfrewshire carers’ joint coffee morning
March 30th meeting head of adult services social work Glasgow  
March 28th South Ayrshire Carers Group meeting and talking with group
March 29th speaking at Carr Gomm forum
March 30th meeting with Daniel NHS Community engagement team
APRIL 4TH speaking at Bailleston carers
April 5th Renfrewshire Carers Alzheimer's Support Group
April 13th PRT West Glasgow Carers Centre Dementia Carer Support Group
May 2nd speaking to district nurses East bank Health Promotion Centre
May 9th meeting with Deputy First Minister at Parliament


Tommy

Fight Dementia Australia Thank You

Hi 
A massive thank you to fight dementia Australia for putting my campaign and film on their Facebook page and  in the newsletters ,also thank you to all who have retweeted my blog and film and for the kind comments
Thank you all for the great work you do in raising awareness
Tommy

Thursday, 15 March 2012

E Mails, Letters Life and Love Stories

It has been a busy few weeks for Tommyontour, I was out doing a wee talk at GNEC, it was great to see great friends and supporters of my wee awareness campaign  
when I got home I was catching up on the letters and e mails I have received over the lat weeks, and amongst the issues, questions ,the cry for help and in many  complaints there is one thing that stands out and that is love, So as I have said from day one this campaign is not a protest or a petition , this campaign is  the life stories of people who lives have changed when a loved one is diagnosed  with dementia  I hope  we can learn from the letters and bring more understanding ,help and awareness on  this tragic illness and all that it brings
We as a society can bring help and understanding in a way that keeps our life closer to love stories and less of a  tragedy,
Keep the letters coming we can all help families who will face dementia in the future
Tommy

Glasgow North East Carers, Back to Meet Good Friends

Hi
I will be at GNEC today to update on my campaign, this amazing group sent letters ,appeared in my film  ,accompanied me to parliament and appeared on the evening news with me .Now that’s what I call helping a son  raise  awareness
Tommy

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Thank you all for the amazing support ……………..

Big thanks to all who have been in touch to support my awareness campaign over the last weeks
And thank you for the emails letters, life stories and invites to come and talk about this awareness campaign
Our letters and life stories will help being more understanding to how we live and care for a loved one with dementia
Looking forward to visiting all the amazing local  care groups across the county who help families like mine on a daily basis
Thank you all
Tommy

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Speaking to District Nurses on May 2nd at East bank Health Promotion Centre


A big thank you to Christina Hamill for getting in touch and inviting me to speak at the event she is organizing at East bank Health Promotion Centre on may 2nd
This event will be attended by 45 district nurses, I met Christina last week when I was one of the speakers at a palliative care event held at St Margaret's Hospice
I am grateful for this opportunity to talk to professionals about dementia, caring for my mum and my wee campaign

Tommy


 

Glasgow North East Carers and Baillieston Community Care Talks Confirmed .........

Hi
I will be back to meet and talk with dear friends at Glasgow North East Carers on Thursday ,This amazing group of people sent letters, appeared in my film and John from the group appeared on STV news when they covered my last trip to meet with the deputy first minister  ,David from Baillieston Community Care got in touch to invite me back to meet and talk with his group on April 4th Carers from both the above groups accompanied to Parliament last November when I first met with the Deputy First Minister
I look forward to seeing great friends and supporters of my awareness campaign
Tommy

Monday, 12 March 2012

Positive Talk at NHS, AOD PFPI Steering Group Today..................

Hi
A massive thank you to Daniel Connelly form NHS Glasgow community engagement team for organizing the chance for me to talk to the Acute Operating Division’s Patient Focus & Public Involvement steering Group earlier today, and to all who attended .I feel the talk went well, I had a 30 minute talk then we watched the film followed by a question and answer session
I look forward to the feedback and hopefully future talks within the care sector
 
please see response to talk belwo
Hi Tommy,

Many thanks for attending the Patient Experience meeting yesterday. Your presentation was really helpful in taking forward this work and highlighting some important needs of both patients and carers. There were a number of points highlighted yesterday that we will need to look at in the near future to ensure these are taken forward. I think your description on how attitudes and communication can really affect experience was invaluable and really touched some of those in attendance. I thank you so much for taking the time to come along and I can assure you that this was time well spent and will help in improving the care and experience of those involved with our services.

Speak to you soon and keep up the good work!

Thanks again, Daniel

 
Tommy

Sunday, 11 March 2012

Dementia, Caring, Letters and Life Stories,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

Good Morning
As a son, carer, and would be awareness campaigner, I have spent the last months asking people to share their experiences, living with and caring for a loved one with dementia
And I am sure many will ask can a letter or e mail change a life or raise awareness and understanding
Before I came  home to visit my mum a few years ago after traveling around the world with my job, a visit  home that shocked and changed our lives I was just getting over the break up from  my then long term girlfriend .we both traveled with our jobs and for a long time my then girlfriend kept telling me things had to change and every time she told me or tried to tell me ,I always seemed to talk my way out  of changing ,I always seemed to say when I get home in a few months we will talk about it and things will be ok .
The more she shouted , tried to talk to me or asked for me to listen and understand  the less I heard
Then one day I was going away for 4 months and when I arrived at my destination I opened my suitcase to find a letter, on reading that letter I understood everything my girlfriend had been trying to tell me, I understood why we had to part and I understood why I had to change and I understood as much as we loved each other we had to go our separate ways.
My heart was broken but she was right ,
So a letter changed my life, and I believe our letters and life stories can at the very least bring more understanding on how we feel and live
So I will answer the question can our letters and life stories change lives, I believe they can

Tommy

Saturday, 10 March 2012

SNP Conference Raising Awareness

SNP Conference Raising Awareness

HI
I was at the SNP conference today (my first conference) and would like to say thank you to the Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon for inviting me for a coffee and a chat about the awareness campaign .we sat for twenty minutes chatting about the letters, the people I have met on this tour, my mum and life as a son and carer
We are meeting again on May 9th, when I will be handing in my third report on my awareness activities (a report on the people I meet ,their thoughts and the talks I do) along with the letters and e mails I receive .I still truly believe our life stories will help bring more understanding on the lives we lead ,so keep them coming
I also bumped into and attended a fringe meeting with Fiona collie and Lynn Williams, also a big thank to David McDonald and john Shaw for taking time to chat
While I was there I handed out some DVDs of the Tommyontour film long with my blog details to delegates and exhibitors I was introduced to ,
I hope a few will get in touch and help me raise awareness on dementia and caring for a loved one
Tommy

SNP Conference Today, Hope to Meet and Make New Friends,

hi

Heading off to the SNP conference today, Happy to say I will be meeting the Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon at mid-day to have a quick chat and update her on the  progress Of my awareness campaign and ambitions
A few SNP members have kindly got in touch to say they will look out for me and  say hello ,my  wee mum is at her wee day group today so I have 5 hours to get there meet some people and get home ,
I will update more tonight after I get home

Tommy  

Friday, 9 March 2012

Tommyontour Film Now on Websites Around the World,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

Good Morning  
Big thanks to Fight Dementia Australia, Dementia Aware New York and Dementia Today California for getting in touch and agreeing to put the film on their websites
I sit late at night furiously typing the words dementia and Alzheimer’s followed by a country into Google, and sending them my film and blog I am tired but extremely happy to say lots of national awareness groups throughout the world are getting back in touch to say the are putting the film on their sites, sharing with others and sending my blog out
Thank you all for helping rasie awareness
Tommy

5 day tour with NHS Western Isles for dementia awareness week 2017

I  would like to take this opportunity to thank the Elizabeth Shelby, NHS Western Isles Dementia Consultant Nurse,  Denise Symington, NHS W...