National statistics suggest as many as 20 per cent of Cowichan Valley residents may have experience caring for someone living with dementia.
That means there’s a tremendous need locally for information to help people live well with dementia.
The free Family Caregiver Series, offered by the non-profit Alzheimer Society of B.C., helps fill that need. Coming to Duncan starting on Oct. 4 for five consecutive Fridays, it provides basic information about the disease for family members who are caring for a person living with dementia.
“We offer practical techniques and strategies that they can begin using immediately,” says Jane Hope, an Alzheimer Society of B.C. Support & Education coordinator for the Valley and the rest of the Central & North Island region.
The series helps caregivers understand changes in communication and behaviour caused by dementia. Sessions also offer insight into planning for the future and self-care for caregivers.
“The physical and psychological impact on family caregivers is considerable,” says Hope.
Dementia is the medical term for a set of symptoms that are caused by illnesses affecting the brain. A survey done for the Alzheimer Society of Canada shows that one in five Canadians has experience caring for someone living with a form of dementia.
The Family Caregiver Series runs for five Fridays from Oct. 4 through Nov. 1 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., at Providence Farm, 1843 Tzouhalem Rd. Pre-registration is required by contacting 1-800-462-2833.
If you are living with dementia or have questions about the disease, visit www.alzheimerbc.org and call the First Link Dementia Helpline at 1-800-936-6033 (English), 1-833-674-5007 (Cantonese and Mandarin) or 1-833-674-5003 (Punjabi).