On Monday 20th August, the shortlist for Scotland’s Dementia Awards was announced. Dundee FC Supporters' Society are delighted to announce our inclusion on that shortlist, through one of the charities that visited Dens as part of the Community Initiative, the Football Reminiscence Project. The Society has been shortlisted in the category ‘Best Dementia friendly community Initiative’.
The Football Reminiscence project was first brought to the attention of the Supporters' Society through the ‘day’ job of community director Jacqui Robertson, a Community Staff Nurse in Dundee, but this initiative has grown with the help of many people. Volunteers have come from both within and outwith the Society, even going as far as the Club’s honorary President and League Champion, Pat Liney.
With the nomination being announced, the Society caught up with the legend that is Pat Liney, to catch his thoughts on the nomination. "Because I am getting a bit older, and still involved in the club, I was already involved with a few schemes involving our elderly supporters, and when I heard about this project, I thought it was something I could get involved in. It actually helps me keep myself active as well. I like being involved in stuff like this, I visit fans in hospital now and then, if you are in hospital for quite a long time, family comes to visit every day, and sometimes you just run out of things to say. To have someone from the club visit, it gives the patient someone different to speak to, a different subject to speak about, and maybe just gives their loved ones a wee break, a chance to have a cup of tea, and it’s amazing how this little thing can make a big difference. The Football Reminiscence Project works in a similar manner; we can give these people something to talk about, something to share. That is something I enjoy, and it can be uplifting for me as well."
Pat Liney saves at Ibrox - one of the many photos handed in"This nomination is fantastic" continued Pat, "it makes things all the more worthwhile, and maybe makes more people want to get involved, and that’s the crux of it, if we can get more people involved, we can help more people. Supporters of this club are absolutely fantastic, when the club was having difficulties, I would see season ticket holders pay at the gate, and put money in buckets after that, and we are not talking businessmen here, but your every day supporters, and the fans have been magnificent helping out with this project as well, when we appealed to the fans for photographs, they did not disappoint, it seems that is the way Dundee fans are, to go out of their way to help others the way they did says a lot about the supporters of this club, and seeing things like that can be very humbling."
Pat will be visiting Glasgow next week along with Society Board Members Jacqui Robertson and Grant Cook to take part in some filming for the award ceremony. "I am excited to be going, not so much for myself, but for Dundee, the Supporters' Society, for Jacqui and Grant, who both put in a lot of work on this, for the charity and of course the fans who handed in the photographs."Volunteers line up in the Penman Lounge to collect photos
The Society would like to take this opportunity to congratulate everyone involved in this initiative, from the board members involved, to Pat, who has put a lot of time into this, and of course the supporters who turned up with some treasured possessions to add to the collection of photographs. To be shortlisted for an award like this can only be seen as an honour and a vindication, if any was needed, of the Community Initiative and all the work Jacqui has put into it.
Anyone interested in becoming a volunteer with the Football Reminiscence Project, wishing to loan some photographs, or just looking for some more information should contact Grant Cook.