In an effort to help raise dementia awareness and to support those living with dementia, I have teamed up with my professional colleague, Cate McCarty, PhD of Dr. Cate, Dementia Coach to bring Memory Café to Gulfport. Together we will bring approximately 70 years-worth of professional and personal experience to our Memory Café monthly meetings.
Though known about previously, it was because of Norman McNamara and the organization he started (Purple Angel Global Dementia Awareness Project) that Cate and I both were personally inspired to take action.
Memory Café meetings were originally created in the UK, and have spread throughout Europe due to their effectiveness and therapeutic value. Sharing this concept from “across the pond”, our Memory Café is intended for those with early onset dementia, those who have recently been diagnosed with dementia, and/or have early to mild Alzheimer’s disease and their caregivers. You can read more about Memory Café here.
Our first Memory Café meeting will be held February 20th, 2017 @ Neptune Grill, a family owned and operated restaurant. We hope to draw those who may be feeling isolated or hopeless, back out into the sunshine, and we have plenty of it here in Gulfport.
The beauty of Memory Café meetings is that they have various formats. The specific intent of this particular Memory Café is to provide a social opportunity for attendees to meet others sharing the same types of challenges, to laugh, to learn, to provide resource information, and to help renew the spirit. The overall intent is to extinguish fears and to inspire renewed purpose and hope, because socialization is a major element in living a healthy lifestyle and having quality of life.
We strongly believe that supporting those with dementia and their caregivers at a local level is critical to ensuring a higher quality of life.