Honouring people with dementia

Today I appeared at the last day of the dementia hearings as a witness at the Australian Royal Commission into Aged Care.

I’m feeling emotionally shattered by this. Unexpectedly so.

This was in honour of the 50 million people living with dementia globally and our families.

I also dedicated today’s attendance at the Hearing and my Witness Statement to my father in law, the late Peter Watt and a close friend the late Michael Stone.

Australia, the time is now to act. I remain pessimistically optimistic.

You may be able to access the video here: https://webstreaming.lawinorder.com.au/acrc

23 thoughts on “Honouring people with dementia

  1. Pingback: In the Blogs – 2019 – When The Fog Lifts

  2. Hi Kate, you are always our model to learn and follow. Listen to the voice of each person with dementia is undoubtedly vital in whatever circumstances. I am looking forward to meeting you as I have shared before and please do let me know if you will come to Hong Kong~~~~ It will be my honor to meet you up and thanks for doing everything to inspire people~~~~


  3. I am humbled by your latest post Kate and the fact that the Royal Commission called you. Yes they are working very hard on a medical solution to arrest dementia but as the years pass the neurological landscape only gets more complicated, leaving it imperative for us to work harder on providing adequate and reasonable care for people who have dementia. Sadly, still one of the greatest fears people have as the get older, is how they will be treated if dementia catches up with them and the decline means they have to be cared for and i am so glad it was you who was chosen to give evidence at that royal commission. Dememtia eventually affects all of us as I found out some years back when I visited a friend of mine. My experience was immensely sad but the fight goes on for humanity.


    To get to the nursing home,
    I had to travel through a maze
    some of which I knew
    but most of it erased
    by that ever present demon called change.
    It was a journey by electric trains, escalators
    then by foot to a bus stop.
    The driver did not know where it was.
    But for a kindly babushka who gave me directions,
    I would have been lost in a city once familiar.
    Somehow I made it to a small private hospital
    tucked in the back of “The Cross”.
    The place where they cared for my friend
    in an another maze within itself.

    I did not know what to say when I saw him
    I had known him for thirty seven years!
    He did not recognise me!
    It was time to say something;
    somehow stare down the funnel of time
    make some feeble appeal to long term memory,
    tell him how much I loved him.
    Once he saved my life,
    gave me permission to live!
    But now, it was too late.
    to let him know he was a giant of a man
    all to do was find something
    we had left in common
    all the while knowing
    that change like a reaper, had stolen him too.

    After that there was nothing left
    but to reengage the present
    journey back into that maze
    hoping that something, anything
    could salve my shock
    so I could regroup my wits and find
    the long road to the deep north
    in order to journey to another scattered city in
    another far off country,
    where life before old age is lived
    to it’s own set of inevitable conclusions.



  4. There can be no greater witness nor better representative than you Kate… I am now going to stand to attention and salute you.

    Warm regards


    • That’s sounds a bit formal Steve, but thank you. I was bowing on and off all day yesterday to the two Commissioners, or do we do that in Australian courts, to the Monarch? 🙃


  5. Kate, you provided a clear and comprehensive account of the shortcomings and proposed solutions to the range of issues faced by anyone impacted by dementia. Thank you for your strong and courageous advocacy. I can understand the toll the Commission process had on you.I wish you well. Peggy


  6. I have just read the transcript from today’s hearing … Well done Kate. You spoke eloquently and with passion. Congratulations. Take care.


  7. You came across so well – congratulations! But then travelling for another convention …. I hope that it isn’t getting too tiring or stressful 😦 Big hugs…..


  8. Wow old boiler you are incredible just watched you in action. I hope you have your feet up and enjoying a few 🍷Talk soon much love Ness


    • Haha! Just about to board for home from Sydney. Geneva tomorrow for the World Health Assembly next week! Catch you after that as we definitely need an old boiler chat ❤️🤪❤️


  9. Hi Kate. I watched you on the Royal Commission live stream. You were awesome! Rest up my friend and regain your strength because there are more pessimists to inspire to action!


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