Dementia Friends Training Program Available
In 2010 the State of MN passed legislation requiring the state to prepare for the huge impact Alzheimer’s disease will have on our population and our resources over the next few decades. One of the five areas the state identified as needing attention is helping communities become dementia capable.
The state chose five pilot communities for this program: four geographic communities (including St. Paul), and one religious/cultural community, which is the Twin Cities Jewish community. Their goal is to increase awareness, reduce stigma around Alzheimer’s disease, and reach as many people as possible.
Since the program began in 2015, there are now more than 30 dementia-friendly communities throughout the state. Free trainings have been conducted at a variety of locations including Christian and Jewish congregations, law and accounting practices, public libraries, and businesses. Since January, 2017 alone, 411 dementia friends have been trained.
The Dementia Friends training program is a 60-90 minute educational session designed for any community organization, business, religious institution or other community setting. The program focuses on understanding dementia and taking action to create an environment that is safe, respectful, and welcoming for people living with dementia.
Learning objectives include:
- Learn what dementia is and some facts about Alzheimer’s.
- Recognize the signs of dementia.
- Learn tips for communicating and interacting with a person who has dementia.
- Get familiar with dementia-related resources and services in your community.
Dementia Friends training helps organizations heighten their constituents’ awareness of dementia and equips them to respond warmly and effectively when serving people living with dementia and their care partners.