LIBRARY volunteer Dianne Imison says her role is to "take the scary" out of dementia.
Loaded up with books, DVDs, videos and fact sheets, the Merewether resident helps local residents prepare strategies for families and friends to support their loved ones.
The retired teacher librarian has been been a volunteer at the Hunter Dementia and Memory Centre in Hamilton for two and a half years.
She first visited the centre for a community talk on dementia risk reduction in 2010.
Dementia had recently been diagnosed within the family and she was on the hunt for more information.
"My mum was my motivator," Mrs Imison said.
"I'm the eldest in the family and I felt I had to gather as much information as I could.
"I'm always giving them [family members] new books on dementia to read."
After visiting the centre, she decided to volunteer her services and help other families.
Every Wednesday she tends to the Hunter Dementia and Memory Centre library and updates its resources.
Dementia is the third leading cause of death in Australia.
About 1700 cases of dementia are diagnosed in Australia every week, which equates to one person every six minutes.
Mrs Imison said the number of dementia cases was expected to grow, as there was no cure.
Volunteering at the centre gives Mrs Imison great satisfaction and she wants to continue her work to help more families and carers.
■ The Star will publish articles on your community samaritan throughout 2013. To nominate someone, email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 4935 6005.