Wouldn’t it be great if every city, town and village was committed to improving the lives of individuals living with dementia?
Porter Place Memory Care has been actively involved in the greater community for several years now. So helping the Village of Tinley Park work towards a “Dementia Friendly” designation was a natural extension of their partnership.
So what is a “Dementia Friendly” community? And why do our Anthem Memory Care communities feel that it is so important?
The designation is actually part of a nationwide initiative called “Dementia Friendly America”, a program launched back in 2015, in the aftermath of the White House Conference on Aging. It really gained traction after a successful Minnesota statewide pilot project, ACT on Alzheimer’s. And it has since grown and extended to other states.
What does it mean to be “dementia friendly”? For the village of Tinley Park, it is a proclamation of their commitment to put a concerted effort on working to improve the quality of life for individuals throughout the community who are challenged by a dementia, such as Alzheimer’s disease. And, it’s important to note, that focus extends to those who are caring for these individuals as well.
Meredith Morris, community relations director for Porter Place was interviewed by the Tinley Park Patch newspaper. Meredith acknowledged the importance of community involvement. “Dementia and Alzheimer’s are a growing public health concern, locally and nationwide,” she told The Patch. “It’s a very emotional issue for the growing number of families affected by the disease. The more work we can do to educate the public and increase understanding of the disease, the more support there will be for the individuals with the disease and the families who care for them.”
Hats off to Porter Place and to the community of Tinley Park, Illinois for putting the focus on working together to make a difference in the lives of individuals with dementia. You can learn more about Dementia Friendly America and its network of communities here.
(The top photo shows Porter Place Executive Director, Colleen Kamin, second from left, with Village of Tinley leadership.)