The King and Queen of Sweden paid a royal visit to the University of Stirling today to learn about its world-leading dementia research.
His Majesty King Carl XVI Gustaf and Her Majesty Queen Silvia were greeted by Alan Simpson OBE, Lord-Lieutenant of Stirling and Falkirk, and the University’s Rector and Rector, Professor Sir Gerry McCormac, before meeting researchers based on Dementia Services Development Center at the Faculty of Social Sciences.
During a tour of the center’s dementia – friendly demonstration suites – a permanent display of rooms and equipment adapted to support the special needs of people living with dementia – the party learned the history of the unique research facility.
The royal family has an existing interest in dementia with Queen Silvia who founded the charity foundation Silviahemmet, which offers educational programs and care for those living with dementia and their families.
Silviahemmet also supports a large research project, led by Professor Alison Bowes at Stirling, to develop innovations in housing that can better support people living with cognitive conditions, such as dementia, to stay in their own homes.
The project, Designing Homes for Healthy Cognitive Aging (DesHCA) funded by the ESRC under the Healthy Aging Challenge program, brings together Scotland’s leading experts in dementia and dementia design, the construction industry, architects, housing providers and those living with dementia and their families to create patterns of future-proof living that will meet the needs of the world’s aging population.
Rector and Rector of the University of Stirling, Professor Sir Gerry McCormac, said: “We were very pleased to welcome their Majesty the King and Queen of Sweden to the university campus today. This was an important opportunity to showcase the world-leading, transformative and life-changing research led by the university and to recognize the royal couple’s support for this work. ”
Professor Alison Bowes, dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences and principal investigator of the DesHCA project, said: “It is an honor to host the King and Queen today and show the breadth and importance of the research carried out here.
“Dementia is a condition that affects everyone. Approximately 10 million new cases are diagnosed each year, and with the aging of the population worldwide, the demand for new care technologies, new housing models and innovations to help people stay independent longer.
“Collaborations such as our project with Silviahemmet and our other partners bring together research, industry and practice to ensure that these solutions are delivered and make a difference for people all over the world.”
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