The BNC Show and BNC Gives Back programme are pleased to be supporting Events R Talented this year. Find out more about them at our show on 16th April at Central Hall Westminster.

A founder of Events R Talented is fundraising for important research into a rare form of dementia after his brother has been affected by the disease.

Ken Findlay, of Perceptions Associates Limited, is hoping to raise thousands of pounds for Rare Dementia Support through Events R Talented auditions and final.

Events R Talented is the events industry’s answer to Britain’s Got Talent – where artistic individuals audition in front of judges.

To date, singers, musicians, comedians and dance acts have all taken part, with hotels and event suppliers embracing the lively fundraising and engaging initiative and getting involved.

Over the past five years almost £30,000 has been raised in support of global good causes from an HIV charity in Africa to a homeless charity in the UK.

Ken hopes that people will support this year’s Events R Talented in one of three ways:

-        by taking part

-        donating luxury auction and raffle prizes

-        attending the finale event to support the cause

“We’re looking to raise more money in 2024 than we’ve done before,” he said.

“We’re partnering with the BNC Show on this as we know through Kim Paulden and The Buyers’ Networking Club that networking works! The more people we reach the more money we raise and awareness for this little known condition. We’re trying to spread the word through all of our contacts.

“Usually we have between 8-10 people taking part in the audition side of things and we want to have more people taking part this year and are looking for people to come forward with raffle prizes and to join us on the night.”

So far industry colleagues have been hugely supportive, donating signed England football shirts / week’s cruise on a liner / VIP tickets for the NTA awards and stays in hotels, as well as hosting preivous events.

Ken was actually on his way home from an industry event late last year when he received the news about his brother, Donald.

“The day after the MIT Awards I was on the train coming back from London when I got a text from my sister-in-law to say that my brother had been formally diagnosed with

 FrontoTemporal Dementia – FTD.

“We were aware that something was up – he’d been showing symptoms for several years which doctors thought could be some form of dementia but it’s harder to diagnose sometimes and especially as rare dementias affect people very young (under the age of 65).”

Donald now has round the clock care from professionals and family support and his condition needs careful management.

“If you met him on the street, you would think he’s a perfectly healthy man,” said Ken.

“If you start having a conversation with him he’s quite sensible and normal then something switches off in the brain.  

“To avoid him being agitated my sister-in-law has to sort of think on the spot and it’s how you talk to him that makes the difference. For instance, the question of ‘what would you like to do today?’ would confuse him.

“Change of circumstance, scenery or people will also confuse his brain so for example he only goes out by himself every morning in a routine doing the same thing– going to the paper shop. The doctors have said that’s ok but it’s a case of regularly monitoring it.”

Ken said that Hollywood actor Bruce Willis has a similar kind of rare form of dementia and that he and his family have done a lot to raise awareness of the condition.

With Events R Talented and talking to events industry colleagues, Ken hopes to do the same.

Rare Dementia Support are aiming to raise £7m to fund vital research into the conditions they support, to support dementia carers and to fund a specialist centre in the UK.

At present there is no dedicated medical treatment to alleviate the symptoms or to slow down the progress of these dementias, so the focus is very much on developing programmes, plans and research to benefit the patients and their 24/7 carers.

“Whatever money we raise some will go towards that,” said Ken whose Just Giving page has been launched.

“With the events industry’s help we’re potentially going to raise a lot of money.”

You can support Events R Talented by donating to the Just Giving page and find out more about them at The BNC Show on Tuesday 16th April at Central Hall Westminster. Prior to that Ken and the other ERT team will be at other key industry events plus several of them will be taking part in a 10K run in February.

For more information visit the ERT and Rare Dementia Support websites.