The Dementia Training Pathway for Care Homes

ContactJohn Mayell
Telephone01452 426575
AddressShire Hall, Westgate Street, Gloucester, GL1 2TG

This dedicated training pathway for care homes and their staff leading to nationally accredited qualifications that has been developed in Gloucestershire.


The Partnership for Older People Projects (POPP) in Gloucestershire presented us with an excellent opportunity to prioritise the development and implementation of a dementia training and education pathway for care homes.

The pathway

Using research evidence and our earlier work developing dementia training and commissioning dementia e-learning, we have built a staged, flexible and sustainable pathway to support individual and organisational needs. The pathway builds knowledge and understanding, is mapped to national standards and can lead to nationally accredited qualifications.

At its centre is a dementia learning resource pack, which has gone out to all care homes in Gloucestershire. Most importantly the pathway is structured to embed learning into everyday practice, through the establishment of dementia link workers (DLW’s), so that staff are supported to apply their knowledge of dementia in the workplace.

Download the nnteractive dementia training resources for care homes

The Dementia Link Worker

The Dementia Link Worker (DLW) provides a ‘link’ between theory and best practice, using the on-site dementia learning pack as a resource to link the theory element of dementia care with the practice in the home. By linking with other staff members they offer support to promote good practice through knowledge and skills, and link with other DLW’s for peer support and sharing of ideas.

The DLW is an experienced and enthusiastic member of the care home who, if non-registered, should ideally have already completed their NVQ. They will have evidenced appropriate dementia knowledge and skills through full completion of the pathway and be passionate about person centred dementia care

Why has the role been developed?

  • To embed and sustain training into everyday practice
  • To allow experts to be developed and acknowledged
  • To provide staff development opportunities

What impact will the role have?

  • Drive up the quality of dementia care in the home
  • Promote best practice to support people with dementia
  • Promote the well being and rights of people with dementia
  • Allow staff to feel supported in looking for solutions
  • Provide opportunities for staff to discuss dementia care practice