Dementia well-being films in diverse community languages, Bristol

A project in Bristol co-developed films in different languages, so they could reach more people with dementia.

The purpose of the activity: To bring about changes in awareness that will lead to people with dementia and carers accessing diagnosis and support earlier, by make films in six local community languages - Polish, Somali, Cantonese, Punjabi, Urdu, and English - all including English subtitles. Quantitative data indicates that people from diverse communities may be isolated and under-using services, only being diagnosed later when it is harder to plan and adapt to live well with dementia. 


The project was devised to be a resource that would be available firstly to people in the community who were not confident in their understanding of English or their understanding of dementia. 

The resources were intentionally developed in such a way that they were also easily available to GP’s, dementia clinics, residential care homes and  targeted community groups.

The films were produced in a particular way that would allow for the 10 main questions in each film/language to stand alone regardless of which part of the country people lived in.  

What happened 

Consultation with around 100 people initially by phone or email, then active involvement of about 30 people across the six films over the entire process.

'For each of the six films I met with community members (people affected by dementia and community leaders) to ask what questions/information they would require in a short film and for recommendations of respected community leaders to be invited to take part in the film.  We discussed the content, the music and who the contributors’ might be.' (Trish Caverley) 

The results

The six films were made. Below are the Somali and Cantonese versions. At the top of the page is the Urdu version. 

To date the films have had over 2,000 views.

The team have used the films with various community groups, in mosques, temples and care settings

  • 'It’s hard to describe “changes” as such as these films are just one part of the development work we do. What we do know is they provide an excellent introduction to communities that are often neglected by health services.' (Trish Caverley) 

What changed for people with dementia

Some service users have fedback that they have sent a link to, for example, Somali relatives, to increase their understanding of a relative’s dementia. 

Since the films were made, Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group has been looking with people in their BME (Black and Minority Ethnic) Network, and Alzheimer's Society, at using the films as a starting point to create a similar, new film, in Gujerati, aimed at people in Gloucestershire.

Learning points

  • 'Whilst we needed to be clear, on behalf of the funding organisation, about financial restrictions and production quality I feel the production process  was very open to developing in a collaborative manner’  (Trish Caverley)
  • Getting people from ethnic minority communities to talk on film about dementia is extremely hard. A key part of this work was building relationships and trust.
  • Filming takes much longer than it is ever planned to take.
  • Making films in different languages is technically and culturally challenging.

Key contact to find out more:

Trish Caverly Trish (Bristol Dementia Partnership) [email protected]

Useful link

Dhek Bhal - network to promote the health and social well being of South Asian people living in Bristol and South Gloucestershire through working with Healthwatch, health and care providers on a range of services, including these films.

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