Memory Cafe: How to start a dementia friendly program in your community


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Dementia has several common symptoms, but it is important to know that dementias is not a normal part of ageing. Not everyone with dementia have the same symptoms. Symptoms vary by the type of dementia, underlying causes, Two or more symptoms must pre present for a diagnosis of dementia. Symptoms must be severe enough to interfere with daily life. About 60% of people with dementia will wander on foot or by a vehicle, as the disease progresses.

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Memory Cafes A guide to starting a dementia friendly program in your community.

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Included in this presentation… What is dementia? What is the “purple angel” and what does it mean to be “dementia friendly”? What is a memory café? Define your purpose and “café” format Develop a budget and secure funding Marketing and promotion Memory café examples More training and other resources

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Let me introduce myself… Doug Seubert Master’s degree in public health (MPH) Certified Dementia Practitioner (NCCDP) Dementia Specialist (Wisconsin) Dementia trainer and consultant Experienced caregiver Founder and executive director of Marshfield Area Purple Angels

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Marshfield Area Purple Angels “To provide education and raise awareness regarding Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, home care, and end of life issues, and to support individuals with dementia and their families through educational, individual, and community-based projects and programs.”

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The Dementia Umbrella Dementia is an “umbrella” term used to describe the clinical symptoms of a group of over 100 conditions that impair memory, behavior, and thinking. Alzheimer’s Disease Vascular Dementia Lewy Body Dementia Parkinson’s Disease Dementia Dementia with Lewy bodies Frontotemporal Degeneration Behavioral Variant (bvFTD) Mixed Dementia “Early Onset”

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Common Symptoms of Dementia Sources: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Alzheimer's Association M C B M

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What is the “purple angel”? The symbol of dementia awareness People with dementia Caregivers Supporters and friends

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What is “dementia friendly”? A dementia-friendly community is a place where people living with dementia are supported to live a high quality life with meaning, purpose, and value. (Alzheimer’s Australia) A dementia-friendly community is one in which people with dementia are empowered to have high aspirations and feel confident, knowing they can contribute and participate in activities that are meaningful to them. (Alzheimer’s Society, UK)

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What is a memory café? A memory cafe is a social event where people with dementia, and those who care about them, come together in a safe and engaging environment. Dementia friendly communities offer opportunities for people with dementia to remain active, social members of the community. Memory cafes are one example of how communities support people with dementia and those who care for them.

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A memory café is … NOT a promotional gimmick NOT a tool to sell products or services NOT a fundraiser NOT a “baby sitting” service NOT a “support group” NOT a field trip for nursing home residents NOT designed for late stage dementia NOT for everyone

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Starting a Memory Cafe

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Define your purpose Why are you doing this? Who are you doing it for? What needs have you identified? What do you hope to achieve? Will you boldly face dementia or create an “escape” from it? Ban all references to dementia OR Celebrate dementia Offer dementia resources? Provide caregiver support?

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Determine the format Who can attend? (closed or open group) How long? (1 hour, 90 minutes, 2, 4 hours) Refreshments or meal? Speakers/Presentations? Activities? The “when” and “where” often determine the format (or vice versa?)

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Develop Budget Identify what are one-time costs (or start-up costs) and either include them in a separate budget or divide them over 12 months to get an estimate of average spending per memory café event in a year.

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Secure Sustainable Funding Grants Sponsorships Donations (cash and “in kind”) Will attendees be asked to donate? Pass the hat? Suggested donation? Potluck? Volunteers

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Marketing and Promotion Create a flyer

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Marketing and Promotion

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Marketing and Promotion

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Aging and Disability Resource Center Alzheimer’s Association Healthcare providers Churches and community organizations Local library Chamber of Commerce Articles in local newspaper Social media Marketing and Promotion Target your audience!

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Marketing and Promotion Taking and using photos Vulnerable population Disclaimer (blanket statement) The Purple Angels Memory Café is a public event. Media may be present, and photos may be taken and appear on our website, social media sites, and publications. Option to decline Obtaining permission

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Memory Café Examples Basic format Introductions, name tags, social interaction Light refreshments Discussion topic and/or speaker Activity OR Road trip/outing

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Memory Café Examples Extended format Introductions, name tags, social time Sing-a-long Formal presentation Break / Announcements Lunch Activities “come when you can, leave when you need to”

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Memory Café Examples

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Memory Café Examples

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Memory Café Examples

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Memory Café Examples

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Memory Café Examples

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Memory Café Examples From Fox Valley Memory Project Appleton Public Library, Saturday, November 12, 10:00 - 11:30 a.m. Our Heroes … A look back at our favorite comics, radio shows, books, movies, television programs and the toys that they inspired. Refreshments served. Atlas Waterfront Café, Thursday, November 3, 2:00 - 4:00 p.m. Join us as we celebrate Veterans Day. We will remember the sacrifices of our Veterans and sing patriotic themed songs led by our special musical guests from newVoices.

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Memory Café Examples From Fox Valley Memory Project Kaukauna Public Library, Monday, November 14, 2:00 - 3:30 p.m. Join us as we create special Thanksgiving cards for home care and Mobile meals clients. Hoffman Memory Care Resource Center, Monday, November 28, 10:30 a.m. - 12 p.m. Karla Huston, poet and writer will join us for a poetry reading and writing activity. Enjoy coffee and treats.

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Memory Café Examples From Fox Valley Memory Project Menasha Senior Center, November 25, 2:00 - 3:30 p.m. Join us for “Thankful Bingo” We will share stories of favorite Holiday moments and play bingo using your thankful notes that we have collected throughout the year. Fun prizes. Recipe of the month: Favorite Holiday dish. Neenah Public Library, Monday, November 21, 1:30-3:30 p.m. Celebrate National Game Design Month by discovering new and old games with us! We can't wait to have you join us.

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More Resources Neigborhood Memory Café Tool Kit The Alzheimer’s Café A Guide to Setting Up a Memory Café (UK) ttp://

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More Information Marshfield Area Purple Angels Website: Facebook: Doug Seubert, MPH, CDP Dementia Specialist / Certified Dementia Practitioner Email: Phone: 715-383-0897