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Cuimhne – Irish Memory Loss Alliance

Support Cuimhne


Cuimhne (pronounced ‘queevna’) is the Irish word for memory. We use the term ‘memory loss’ as it is more acceptable to many members of the Irish community than the term ‘dementia’, which is often stigmatised.

We also believe using this term aims to recognise the uniqueness of each person and the differing ways in which people are affected by, and cope with memory loss.

Our campaign

Group at Cuimhne event
Group at Cuimhne event

Our Cuimhne campaign is a call for action to everyone, to individuals and to organisations both within our network and beyond, to involve and include people living with memory loss and dementia and their carers in our society and to work together to promote awareness of memory loss and create a friendly community for everyone.

We can each take action to promote a socially inclusive society and raise awareness about dementia. Join our Cuimhne campaign and help promote the simple measures we might take together to enable people with memory problems to remain independent and engaged with local communities and services and to better support family carers.

  • We advocate for a dementia inclusive society
  • We campaign on policy issues around dementia
  • We challenge social taboos talking about dementia
  • We offer workshops to Irish community and cultural groups on memory loss awareness
  • We support organisations to take practical actions to support people living with dementia, their families and carers
  • We advise organisations on culturally relevant issues and practical actions around dementia prevention and care for Irish communities
  • We welcome volunteers from all walks of life to join us in this mission – please get in touch to find out more 

Central to our plan is to support family carers as well as individuals who may have some form of memory loss. Access resources for supporting carers here.

Book and video

Cuimhne book open
Cuimhne book open

Watch our new video ‘My Story’, which is to help carers and family members use our Memory Book to support people with memory loss and dementia. Contact Cuimhne to find out more about our memory book.

Read our regular Cuimhne Champions Blog


Why campaign about dementia and memory loss?

Cuimhne planning meeting
Cuimhne planning meeting

The 2011 Census identified the Irish as having the oldest aged profile than any other ethnic group in Britain. Out of 500,000 in the group, 204,000 are over the age of 60 with a further 80,000 between the ages of 50 and 60 years. 11% of the Irish community identified as being a family carer – many carers are elders with health needs. 

The older age profile of the Irish population in Britain compared to the general population and other minority ethnic groups is inevitably accompanied by problems of (mostly preventable) ill–health. Although there is no empirical evidence relating to dementia, community organisations are daily faced with significant numbers of people with memory loss, most of which is undiagnosed or untreated. 

Given the incidence of coronary heart disease, stroke and hypertension in the Irish community, the risk of vascular dementia may well be higher than the age profile of the population suggests. The poor socio–economic circumstances of a significant proportion of the older population living in areas of marked multiple deprivation, confounds their ability to access health and social care in an equitable or timely manner.

Take Action! You can get involved as an individual or an organisation