• Design & Build

Alzheimer's Research UK

Creating a platform to help young people better understand dementia.

Brief

There are lots of sources adults can go to for information about dementia. But a recent poll showed there’s a real need for information aimed specifically at children and young people. As a result of that research, Alzheimer's Research UK asked us to create a new website for them with the aim of helping younger people better understand dementia.

Solution

We created Dementia Explained, with input from children and families with first-hand experience of the illness, what it is, and how it affects people who have dementia and their loved ones. The platform is divided into three sections designed to appeal to different age groups – younger children, older children and teenagers – with age-appropriate content in each one.

What we did

  • Design
  • Website Build

Helping Alzheimer’s Research achieve their aims

Alzheimer's Research UK is the UK’s leading Alzheimer’s research charity and has the explicit aim of one day defeating dementia. The charity funds world class studies into the condition to give researchers and scientists the best chance of beating dementia as soon as possible. Their pioneering work focuses on prevention, treatment and cure.

YouGov poll on effects of dementia

A recent YouGov poll revealed that nearly three in ten parents in the UK say their children aged 18 and under have felt the impact of dementia, with 11 percent saying that their children currently have a family member living with the condition. Yet there were no easily accessible sources of information where children and young people could find out about the condition.

Key features for each age group

The platform is split into three sections – Young Kids, Juniors and Teens. Each one includes illustrated stories and games to help explain the condition and an interactive virtual tour of the brain for each age group. There’s also information on the latest dementia research and findings, and scientific careers advice for the oldest group.

Learning through playing

The site also features a custom-made arcade type game called ‘Amyloids’ (the toxic protein that builds up in the brain of someone suffering from Alzheimer’s) to help make learning fun and interactive. Players learn about the biology of Alzheimer’s while trying to protect the brain from amyloids and other harmful proteins.

A place to share their own experiences

There’s also an opportunity for young people to share their own experiences and memories of dementia with other platform users on a special Memory Board. Young visitors can add their own thoughts, videos, pictures, songs and poems and other writing about their feelings or experiences and share them with other children and teens who may be going through something similar.

I think this is a brilliant project. As a parent of young children, it is great to see such a fantastic array of age-appropriate dementia resources all in one place. Dementia affects so many families that it’s high time there was a site like this dedicated to children and teens.

I can also see this site being a real help for parents who would like to talk through the condition with their children and explain why a family member might be behaving in an unusual way. Dementia isn’t like a lot of other illnesses and children can have so many questions that aren’t always easy to answer. The stories, information and activities on Dementia Explained will really help with this.

Edith Bowman - Broadcaster and Alzheimer's Research UK Supporter

More Case studies