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The Youghal Social Café is a once monthly social event for local people, carers and families living with a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s or other forms of Dementia. The Youghal Social Café was set up in May 2014 by a small working group consisting of public health nurses, community workers, the Cork Alzheimer’s Society and concerned family members. There is no day care centre in Youghal to offer respite and support to families coping with Dementia; it was clearly evident that the provision of a safe, fun and engaging opportunity for families living with a diagnosis of Dementia was needed to reduce social isolation in Youghal and in other areas of East Cork.

The Youghal Social Café enables families, carers and friends to come together once a month, access advice and support in a relaxed, fun and non-judgemental environment. With the help and dedication of local volunteers the Social Café is able to provide live music, free hand massage, homemade cakes and more importantly a chat and a smile for every person who walks through the doors of the Social Café.

Each month the Social Café hosts tailored activities and guest speakers; a Dementia advisor from the Cork Alzheimer’s Society is often on hand to speak with people about their diagnosis and answer any questions they may have. The overall atmosphere of the café is one of inclusion, reducing isolation and stigma and promoting socialisation in the presence of others who understand the experience of living with the disease.

“It gives the people that come a chance to meet, they wouldn’t generally see people, and it’s generally relaxed, it’s a good way to go and start the day. And also learn things from other people.

Anybody could come in and integrate with the other people, new person that we know is going, looks like it’s good for her. It has a good following, it’s something to look forward to. They have nice drinks and food available. It’s timed well, it’s when people can relax and get there without rushing”. Social Café member living with a diagnosis of Dementia.


“The social cafe is a lovely place with lovely people. There is always kind volunteers offering tea, cake, a kind word, support. My mother has been going regularly for a long time, she is used to going, people know her and she feels comfortable. I feel supported in my community in my caring journey through going to the Social Cafe, it provides us both with a break from the norm while being reassuringly familiar and welcoming”. Family Carer.

The Social Café is held the last Friday of every month from 11am-1pm at the Holy Family Hall, Magners Hill, Youghal. The service is available to anyone from East Cork and is free to attend.

Dementia Understand Together

The name of this website and of the wider campaign is Understand Together. The name was carefully chosen, to reflect exactly what we want to achieve.

Understand Together is a public support, awareness and information campaign It is aimed at inspiring people from all sections of society to stand together with the 500,000 Irish people whose families have been affected by dementia. We want to help create an Ireland that embraces and includes people living with dementia, and which displays solidarity with them and their loved ones.

Through Understand Together we aim to weave a connecting thread through all the vital and committed local services that are already in place in Ireland. We want to make them easier to find and understand. As well as this website, the campaign will use advertising and the media to increase awareness. We want to inspire new groups, organisations and communities to think about ways in which they can contribute to building an Ireland that supports those living with dementia and their families in a better way.

We want to encourage individuals, businesses and other organisations to take small practical steps to help build compassionate communities that provide vital social support to those experiencing dementia.

These are the wide ranging objectives of the Understand Together campaign:

  • To increase awareness of dementia and its impact on individuals, families and communities.
  • To help communicate the lived experience of people living with dementia and those caring for them.
  • To provide reliable information about dementia and signposting to services and supports to help those living with dementia, those caring for them, health professionals and the general public.
  • To build on and support greater co-ordination of dementia programmes and initiatives across Ireland.
  • To promote the uptake of dementia awareness training and promote information about brain health and ways to prevent dementia
  • To inspire and encourage individuals, businesses and organisations and communities to become involved in taking steps to create inclusive and supportive environments for people with dementia and their loved ones.
  • To promote and highlight the actions of individuals, businesses and communities to support people with dementia and their loved ones.

Understand Together is one of six key elements of the National Dementia Strategy and has been made possible through a funding partnership between the State and The Atlantic Philanthropies.  The campaign is led by the HSE’s Health and Wellbeing Division.

The campaign seeks to build on the wide range of dementia specific programmes and initiatives already in place around Ireland. It will draw together the people and organisations involved in this work, to join them with wider society, with the health service, with new partners like retail and transport organisations, financial services, and with neighbours and friends, to create a national movement which will help support those living with dementia and their loved ones.

Freephone helpline: 1800 341 341
Email: Roisin.Guiry@hse.ie 

Alzheimers Society Ireland

The Alzheimer Society of Ireland is a national non-profit organisation providing dementia specific services and supports. It advocates for the rights and needs of all people living with dementia and their carers. It supports people with all types of dementia, not just Alzheimer’s disease.

The Society’s vision is an Ireland where no one goes through dementia alone and where policies and services respond appropriately to the person with dementia and their carers, at the times they need support.

The Alzheimer Society’s network includes over 120 dementia specific services such as day care centres, home care services, carer support groups, social clubs, Alzheimer cafés and two respite centres.  For a full list of the services in your area please see Supports and Services section.

The Alzheimer Society of Ireland also operates the Alzheimer National Helpline Service offering information and support to anyone affected by Alzheimer’s or dementia at 1800 341 341.

The Alzheimer Society of Ireland has more than 300 volunteers and over 900 full and part-time staff. There are three regional offices and a network of local branches.

National Helpline: 1800 341 341
Email: helpline@alzhiemers.ie