LONGMEADOW — The Dementia Friendly initiative, active across the state of Massachusetts as well as the country, helps communities better understand and relate to individuals who suffer from Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. JGS Lifecare in Longmeadow, along with the Longmeadow Adult Center and Glenmeadow Retirement Community, have come together to form the Dementia Friendly (DF) Longmeadow Initiative Team to facilitate educational programs, training, and awareness for the Longmeadow community about Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. The goal is to make Longmeadow a dementia-friendly community. The initiative will be overseen by the Alzheimer’s Assoc.
The public is invited to attend the kickoff of a yearlong series of events on Tuesday, Jan. 9 from 5 to 7 p.m. at JGS Lifecare, 770 Converse St., Longmeadow, in the Gloth Family Auditorium. The program will include remarks from state Sen. Eric Lesser and state Rep. Brian Ashe, as well as core team members of the DF Longmeadow Initiative team. Emily Kearns, coordinator for Dementia Friendly Massachusetts, will present about the benefits of a community becoming dementia-friendly.
“We encourage members of the community, local business owners, agency leaders, and other professionals to come and learn what the Dementia Friendly Initiative is all about, and how they can play a role in making it a reality in Longmeadow,” said Mary-Anne Schelb, director of community relations for JGS Lifecare, who spearheaded the DF Longmeadow Initiative Team. “By working together through better understanding, we will be supporting individuals living with dementia as well as their friends and families. A dementia-friendly community is informed, safe, and respectful, thus enabling people living with dementia and those who care about them to live full, engaged lives.”
The event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served. Registration is appreciated; call (413) 567-6212, ext. 3105.