Rain

Rain

max temp: 9°C

min temp: 7°C

Search

Felixstowe: Staff at East of England Co-op wear futuristic ‘ageing’ suits to understand challenges of dementia

PUBLISHED: 19:09 30 October 2014 | UPDATED: 19:09 30 October 2014

Darren Wash, store manager of the Co-operative shop in Felixstowe, walks through the store wearing gear to simulate how people with dementia feel and see things.

Darren Wash, store manager of the Co-operative shop in Felixstowe, walks through the store wearing gear to simulate how people with dementia feel and see things.

Supermarket staff donned a ‘spaceman-esque’ ageing suit to do their daily shop in a bid to understand the challenges of dementia.

Darren Wash, store manager of the Co-operative shop in Felixstowe, walks through the store wearing gear to simulate how people with dementia feel and see things.Darren Wash, store manager of the Co-operative shop in Felixstowe, walks through the store wearing gear to simulate how people with dementia feel and see things.

The first Shopping in their Shoes exercise took place at the East of England Co-op in Felixstowe yesterday.

Representatives across the business were invited to take part in the challenge which sees participants gather a basic shopping list and paying for the items whilst wearing a GERT suit, created by University Campus Suffolk.

The suit ages the wearer by 30 years and replicates a number of age-related conditions including visual impairments, hearing loss, joint stiffness, loss of strength and reduced co-ordination.

Store manager Darren Wash took part in the futuristic challenge, he said: “The experience really highlighted to me the isolation and vulnerability that some of our older customers might feel – it’s not just the everyday challenges of shopping, but also the importance of connecting with other people.

“It also made me think about the practical ways that we can make the shopping experience better for all our customers – whether it’s customer service or the process of paying and packing at the tills.”

Willie Cruickshank of the Norfolk and Suffolk Dementia Alliance and UCS facilitators were on hand to debrief participants as they said the experience of ‘ageing’ could be quite emotional.

The East of England Co-op has pledged to become a dementia friendly retailer as they embark on a programme of colleague training throughout their stores in Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex.

Minnie Moll, executive officer at the East of England Co-op, said it was important that all of their customers were able to comfortably shop in their stores, including those with age-related conditions or dementia.

Shopping in their Shoes is part of an extensive Health Care Partnerships project which has seen the EoE Co-op invest over £500,000 into community programmes that promote health and well-being through a range of physical activities, targeted support services and education.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Ipswich Star visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Ipswich Star staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Ipswich Star account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

MPs from Suffolk and Essex were caught up in the drama around Westminster – with several caught in the lockdown at the House of Commons as they voted in the Chamber.

MPs including Colchester’s Will Quince were “told to run” after a major security alert in central London.

At least four people have died after a knife wielding man drove a car into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge in London before stabbing a police officer outside the Houses of Parliament in an apparent terrorist attack.

Eyewitnesses have described the terror and destruction caused by a major terrorist incident in London today.

Like the famous green benches of the House of Commons, the police are part of the fabric of Westminster.

Upper Brook Street is one of the oldest streets in Ipswich and over the centuries it has been home to several public houses and inns, writes David Kindred.

Are you stuck for what to do to celebrate Mother’s Day this weekend?

Suffolk’s senior police officers are to review their presence at “key locations” following the terrorist incident at Westminster this afternoon.

A burglar who was part of a gang that vandalised an Ipswich town centre cafe has been given a suspended prison sentence.

This Sunday sees the start of the 101st year of British Summer Time (BST) as we put the clocks forward one hour at 1am – losing 60 minutes in bed but gaining lighter evenings to enjoy in spring and summer.

Most read

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24