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Spreading the word: enablers and challenges to implementing a nature-based intervention for people living with dementia

Jennifer Bray (Jennifer Bray, Simon Chester Evans and Teresa Atkinson are all based at the Association for Dementia Studies, University of Worcester, Worcester, UK)
Simon Chester Evans (Jennifer Bray, Simon Chester Evans and Teresa Atkinson are all based at the Association for Dementia Studies, University of Worcester, Worcester, UK)
Teresa Atkinson (Jennifer Bray, Simon Chester Evans and Teresa Atkinson are all based at the Association for Dementia Studies, University of Worcester, Worcester, UK)

Working with Older People

ISSN: 1366-3666

Article publication date: 2 March 2022

Issue publication date: 2 August 2022

37

Abstract

Purpose

When new interventions are piloted, the implementation process often takes a back seat but can be key to ensuring that an intervention is successful. This paper aims to highlight the enablers and challenges encountered when implementing a nature-based intervention for people living with dementia.

Design/methodology/approach

The evaluation adopted a mixed methods approach including case studies, telephone interviews with delegates and interviews with participants. Thematic analysis was used to identify overarching themes relating to the enablers and challenges of implementing the intervention.

Findings

Challenges related to understanding how the intervention fitted with existing work and practicalities of what an organisation can offer to support the implementation process. A stable underlying support structure for delegates is required, along with suitable advertising, transport and facilities to support participants. While there is no “one size fits all” approach to implementing an intervention, these findings will help organisations to consider where to focus their support.

Originality/value

The implementation of interventions is often poorly understood but is important when supporting the wider roll out of an intervention. While this paper reports on a nature-based intervention, the learning will be relevant and applicable more broadly for organisations aiming to implement a new intervention and complements previous work relating to the challenges of implementing arts activities.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank Dementia Adventure and the provider organisations for their support and engagement with the evaluation process.Funding details: This work was supported by the Big Lottery Fund (now National Lottery Community Fund) under Grant number 10305983.Declaration of conflicting interests: The authors declare that there is no conflict of interest.

Citation

Bray, J., Evans, S.C. and Atkinson, T. (2022), "Spreading the word: enablers and challenges to implementing a nature-based intervention for people living with dementia", Working with Older People, Vol. 26 No. 3, pp. 216-225. https://doi.org/10.1108/WWOP-11-2021-0057

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022, Emerald Publishing Limited

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