Alternative Futures Group creates community circles to help people with dementia

CathNorth West charity Alternative Futures Group (AFG) is taking a lead in the region by adopting a new community approach to help people with dementia and learning disabilities.

AFG is the first provider to invest in a full time community circles connector who is already making a difference by helping people develop circles of support.

A community circle is a way to support someone through bringing together friends, family and neighbours with a facilitator. A circle can start with two people or several people coming together with a clear purpose before agreeing what the circle can do that will make a difference.

Cath Barton is an experienced trainer and facilitator who prior to joining AFG was an adviser for national charity MacIntyre in all areas of person centred approaches.

Cath Barton, community circles connector said:

“I’m passionate about developing person centred approaches which support people to live the lives they want.

“Circles intentionally build community around a person and help to build relationships and connections with others. Through conversations, supported by a facilitator, a positive difference can be achieved.”

Carol Toner, community service director said:

“We are extremely proud in developing the relationship between Alternative Futures Group and Community Circles. We are looking forward to seeing the very real difference having a circle makes in people’s lives.”

Alternative Futures Group was recently shortlisted in this year’s Charity Times Awards for Charity of the Year, with the result being announced later this month.

More information can be found by visiting and or by visiting our Facebook page, ‘AFG Support’. You can also follow us on Twitter @AFGSupport

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