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Free Alzheimer’s and Dementia Care Workshops and Film

OCEAN CITY — Every 65 seconds in virtually every place in America, someone develops Alzheimer’s disease.

While 5.8 million Americans currently live with the disease, by 2050 the number is expected to rise to 14 million. Without a cure, the number of unpaid caregivers will also climb far above its current 16 million.

Pamela Garofolo, corporate manager of Tapestries, United Methodist Communities, will present two educational workshops at the Ocean City Free Public Library, 1735 Simpson Ave.

The first, Diagnosis and Decisions, will occur 6 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 17. Attendees will learn about the signs, benefits of a proper diagnosis, staging and prognosis. Garofolo will also cover the meaning of treatment, as well as treatment options, including comfort care.

The second workshop is scheduled for 6 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 15, focuses on Making the Most of your Time Together. Garofolo will talk about building upon practical tools for the caregiver’s toolbox, reality orientation vs. validation therapy, communication, distress and finding joy.

“We are eager to share our knowledge and experience with the greater community and to have such great support and the resources of the Alzheimer’s Association,” Garofolo said.

The Delaware Valley Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association will bring two days of free programming at UMC at The Shores, 2201 Bay Ave., Ocean City. Wednesday, April 10, will include a morning session from 9 a.m. to noon and another from 5 to 8 p.m. Speaker Lori La Bey will lead a discussion, A Day in the Life of Dementia. The learning goals are to equip participants with key elements for being a better care partner, capturing joyful moments and reaction awareness.

Also at The Shores, on the second day, Thursday, April 11, two screenings of "A Timeless Love," a film also known as "His Neighbor Phil," will air. The first showing starts at 10 a.m. and ends at noon. The second runs from 6 to 8 p.m. After watching, attendees will discuss the film about love, devotion and Alzheimer’s. The takeaways for caregivers are practical tips, tools and resources needed to shift from crisis to comfort, how the illness impacts relationships, how and why caring roles change, and what is normal.

Both organizations focus on Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. United Methodist Communities at The Shores, a senior living community in Ocean City, offers Tapestries Memory Care and is Comfort Matters accredited. The evidence-based program offers holistic and integrated approaches to improve the quality of care and life for persons experiencing dementia.

The Alzheimer's Association is the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer's care, support and research. To reserve a spot, please call 609-399-8505.

United Methodist Communities at The Shores offers residential and assisted living, respite care, short-term rehab, long-term care, Tapestries Memory Care and Bridges Hospice and Palliative Care. To schedule a personal tour, talk about how we can meet your specific needs or obtain additional information, see UMCommunities.org/TheShores or call Ryan Champion at 609-399-8505.

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