Bistrot Mémoire creates a special environment where people with dementia are able to express themselves whilst still being part of the community. The Jury was convinced by the approach and the mission of the project as well as by the success of the concept. It has spread rapidly throughout France without losing any of the project’s original quality or its mission.
The first Bistrot Mémoire was set up in Rennes in January 2004. Since then, the concept has been implemented in a further 41 communities in France. The idea was jointly developed by a group of institutions and volunteers. Later, a board of governors was appointed which included people with dementia as well as carers.
The Bistrot Mémoire is located in a popular bistrot in the city and welcomes people with dementia and their carers once a week. In Rennes, some 25 people attend each week, including both professionals and volunteers.
The Bistrot Mémoire is a place where people share feelings and experience and develop social ties. It is not an information centre, even though information is given.
The mission is to provide a pleasant location for people with dementia, develop tolerance, change the public’s views about dementia, support carers, prevent crises in the family network and change professional practice.