HER hair is usually blonde, but this Advent she has dyed it
liturgical purple, with a pink flash to acknowledge Gaudete Sunday.
The Vicar of Holy Nativity, Newcastle, the Revd
Juliet Stephenson, will be matching her hair to her vestments
throughout Advent, but is also doing it to raise awareness of
The church runs a special café for carers and their relatives
who suffer from dementia - a safe space, she says, where they can
relax and meet friends without worrying how their loved ones
behave. The idea for the café came from a member of the
congregation, Carole, whose husband, Dave, died after suffering
from early-onset Alzheimer's, and whose mother and mother-in-law
both had it.
As her husband's conditioned worsened, Carole longed for
somewhere where she and Dave could simply go out and relax with a
coffee or beer, and meet people who would understand. "The café is
the ideal place," Ms Stephenson says. "I'm raising awareness and
money for the café and its users, so that, in the summer, they can
have a day out at the Beamish Outdoor Museum . . . a sing-song from
the good old days at the theatre, and maybe some extra sessions
with the hairdresser and manicurist."