Safe Return Guide
Spotted someone who looks lost or confused?
This individual could be living with dementia and may need your help.
CARA’s Safe Return feature aims to help lost or wandering persons with dementia reunite with their caregivers as quickly as possible.
Below are some tips on how you could be of assistance.
Ask gently if the person has a CARA card.
If unable to get a definite response, check if you can spot a CARA logo with a QR code on any of his/her belongings (check clothing, wallet, lanyard etc).
Once you’ve found the QR code, scan it with your mobile phone scanner.
You will be brought to a webpage to fill in simple details such as your name and phone number (to verify you are a genuine user).
Submit this form and you will be able contact the caregiver(s) directly by pressing a Call button.
NOTE: When The Caregiver Turns Up
- Please verify that the Caregiver is related to the Person Living with Dementia.
- View Caregiver’s CARA E-Card
- Request for the caregiver to open up his/her CARA app to show the tagged E-card of the Person Living with Dementia.
- Check if the Person Living with Dementia’s name on the E-card matches the name on the physical CARA Card.
Tips on How to Interact with Persons Living with Dementia
Stay calm. Keep a comfortable distance and ask for permission to move closer.
Try to make eye contact, approach him/her in a calm, soothing and relaxed manner:
- “Hi Mr/ Mdm XXXX (name is stated on CARA card/safe return page) My name is XXXX, you are safe here. Can I do anything to help you?”
Create a calm environment
Move him/her away from loud noises, large crowds or bright lights.
Guide him/her to a safer or quieter place.
If he/she becomes agitated and wants to leave, do not stop the person.
Instead, take note of which direction he/ she headed for. As a last resort, call the police at 999.
Calm him or her
- I’ve called your family; they are on their way. I will stay until you feel better.”
- “You’re safe here.”
If they are fixated on a topic – e.g. “I want to go home”
- Agree with him/her and stall for time
- “Your (family member) is coming, shall we walk to a pick up area or stay here and wait?”
- Point out to nearby flowers, buildings/shops or offer a drink to distract him/ her.
Build a conversation
Use simple language and ask one question at a time.
- If the person doesn’t understand what you’re saying, rephrase rather than repeat the sentence.
- Avoid questions that start with “Do you remember”…”
Try questions that are open-ended but allow for a simple “Yes/No” response such as:
- “Do you like singing? My favourite song is [insert song name], do you have a favourite song?”
- “Do you usually take the train by yourself?
- “Did you use to work? Do you like working?”
Require help from trained staff?
If the person living with dementia is willing to follow you, and/or you require more assistance, bring him/her to the nearest SMRT Dementia-go-to points listed below.
Trained staff will be available to provide additional support.
- Jurong East
- Kent Ridge
- Paya Lebar
- Ang Mo Kio
- Buona Vista
- Bukit Panjang Integrated Transport Hub
- Yishun Integrated Transport Hub
- Choa Chu Kang Bus Interchange
- Sembawang Bus Interchange
- Woodlands Temporary Bus Interchange
For a full listing of Dementia Go-to-points, please visit: