A heartfelt poem written by a Bradford woman after her grandad developed dementia is on display in a London hospital and has been published in the United States.
Emma Barraclough, of Horton Bank Top, was inspired to write to 87-year-old Wilfred Smith after his mental health deteriorated rapidly.
Now, much to the 34-year-old’s delight, the poem – which is called Dear Grandad – has gone global, including being pinned up in the dementia ward at King’s College Hospital in London. “When I wrote the poem to my grandad, it was a way of expressing my feelings to him,” said Emma. “I never for one minute thought the poem would create so much interest.”
The Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Awareness Week runs until Saturday.
Initially, Emma framed the poem and put it in Mr Smith’s room at Cooper House care home in Bradford. Then she decided to raise awareness of dementia by sharing the poem on Facebook.
“Friends, family and even strangers shared my poem – I was amazed at the attention and interest it was getting,” said Emma.
“My poem was then displayed on the Alzheimer’s Show website and then also published in a US carers’ dementia magazine. This meant the world to me, knowing how hard it is watching a loved one very close to me and my family deteriorate due to dementia, and now that little poem to my grandad is creating dementia awareness worldwide.”
Any hospitals or dementia organisations that would like to use Emma’s poem can email b.emma @hotmail.co.uk.
e-mail: rhys.thomas