Caregiver Q&A, 2nd Tuesday each month @ 7pm ET starting May 9th. Ask your caregiving questions! Learn more
Advance Directives: Tools for End-of-Life Decision-Making

Talking about end of life can be uncomfortable. However, those who do it report enormous relief. Those who complete advance care planning also help ensure that end-of-life wishes will be followed & give a real gift to the family and healthcare providers who will be asked to carry out those wishes. Invest an hour of your time to get this done!

Join us to
1. Describe who has the legal right to formulate advance directives & the 3 landmark cases that led to the laws
2. Define advance directives as tools to communicate future medical wishes
3. Discuss conversation starters & resources to create advance directives

Caregiver Pointers to Get You Through the Holidays

As fun as it is to get ready for the holidays, it can also be incredibly stressful for family caregivers. Take a few minutes ahead of the holiday season to think with a gerontologist, Donna Fedus, founder of Borrow My Glasses about the best ways to include older relatives, and particularly people with dementia, in holiday celebrations while protecting yourself emotionally and physically during a busy time of year.

Join us to
Identify ways to keep the increased hustle and bustle holiday energy from overwhelming those with dementia
2. Discuss how you can uphold traditions and create new, more appropriate ways to celebrate
3. Describe new formulas that helps you keep the holiday festive

Caregiver Q&A

When you need a knowledgeable guide to help navigate your caregiving issues, borrow the glasses of Gerontologist Educator, Donna B. Fedus and other guest experts. You’ll have a chance to post your caregiving question and we’ll answer as many as possible on our free Zoom call. Look for the next date at the top of the page, or join our list and we’ll notify you.

Compassionate Communication with Older Adults

Compassionate communication combines what we say, how we say it, and what we communicate on both verbal and non-verbal levels. Join us to learn communication techniques that can add empathy and compassion to your interactions with older adults.

Join us to
1. Examine ways to communicate empathy
2. Utilize communication strategies for older adults with vision & hearing impairments
3. Demonstrate ways to communicate compassion on multiple levels

Coping with PTSD in Older Adults with Dementia

Older individuals who were exposed to significant trauma in their past are at increased risk for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) throughout their life. Symptoms of PTSD such as flashbacks, delusions, agitation, food rituals, and aversions to bathing or personal care can emerge anytime. These symptoms can worsen years after the initial trauma and are complicated by dementia. This program will discuss specific techniques to comfort older adults with PTSD and dementia, which can also be shared with family caregivers.

Join us to
1. Describe common causes of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
2. Identify how present-day behavior in older adults with dementia may relate to trauma history
3. Describe specific techniques to avoid triggering or worsening PTSD symptoms and to enhance comfort in older adults with dementia

Creating Social Connections for People with Dementia While Social Distancing

Regardless of what’s going on in the world outside, you still have to provide the best possible care for your loved one with dementia. Join Donna for this lively and timely virtual workshop as she shares advice on how to adjust your routines to accommodate social distancing, expand your home caregiving tools and cope with additional stresses. Newcomers to online learning are welcome!

Join us to
1. Recognize the changing safety context driven by COVID-19
2. Recognize the consistent need for connection among people with dementia
3. Identify multiple high- and low-tech ways for people with dementia to create COVID-safe social connections

Cultivating Resilience as a Family Caregiver

Family caregivers of older adults are some of the most resilient people out there! The coronavirus pandemic has certainly brought up different challenges for family caregivers, but facing stress, adjusting to a new normal, and coping with adversity comes with the territory. Learning more about resilience can help you carry on as a caregiver.

Join us to
1. Identify traits shared by resilient caregivers
2. Discuss ways to build resilience in yourself
3. Describe how communities can contribute to resilience

Engaging Older Adults Via Technology

This workshop describes the intersection of aging and technology, including barriers and opportunities. Specific engagement strategies will be examined to prepare clinicians and coaches for user experience issues they can anticipate while working with older adults via technology. Bigger picture opportunities to boost technology utilization among older adults will be explored.

Join us to
1. Describe the aging trend along with technology-related barriers and opportunities
2. Identify strategies to engage with older adults through technology
3. Discuss ways to boost technology utilization among older users

Give Up the Guilt: Unpacking Guilt from Your Emotional Baggage

If you have family caregiving responsibilities and are a human being, you almost certainly carry some guilt in your emotional baggage. Join us to consider a different itinerary for your caregiving journey, without lugging around excessive and often exhausting guilt. Learn what you might want to pack instead of guilt to be the best caregiver you can be and enjoy more of your caregiving experience. 

Join us to
1. Identify caregiver guilt triggers
2. Examine ways to unpack guilt from your emotional baggage
3. Recognize what you need to pack for this trip

Helping Your Congregation Meet the Challenges (& Maximize the Opportunities) of Aging

Many faith leaders face issues related to the aging of their congregants. As congregants grapple with spiritual and existential issues, they may seek your help and direction as they tackle challenges ranging from caregiving, dementia, or end of life decisions. Also, a plethora of opportunities exist to engage your older congregants. This workshop is designed raise a range of issues and prepare faith leaders to engage with congregants navigate aging. 

Join us to
1. Describe an overview of our aging society and demonstrate how changing demographics will permanently impact your work
2. Discuss selected implications of the aging trend
3. Examine family caregiver dynamics to help clergy better support congregants with eldercare responsibilities
4. Identify resources and the types of services available for people who wish to age in their homes and communities but may not know where to turn
5. Discover creative opportunities to engage older congregants

Home Design Decisions that Improve Life for People with Dementia

Life can be easier or harder for people with dementia and for their caregivers based on the way space is set up inside and outside of the home. Join us for a photographic home tour sharing simple ideas to make the physical environment easier to navigate for people with Alzheimer’s disease.

Join us to
1. Briefly describe the habilitation model of dementia care
2. Identify home design decisions that decrease frustration for people with Alzheimer’s and improve success in daily living
3. Apply habilitation design principles and learn strategies from others

Learn What Dark Chocolate, Cobblestones & Juggling Have in Common

Exciting scientific evidence demonstrates that some people have extra brain capacity called cognitive reserve, making it possible for them to compensate when brain damage or disease occurs. Learn what you can do to build your cognitive reserve and boost brain functioning in yourself, your family, and your clients. There is hope!

Join us to
1. Describe the principles behind cognitive reserve and brain fitness
2. Explain how cognitive reserve and brain fitness can protect against Alzheimer’s symptoms
3. List dozens of no-cost brain fitness strategies, which can be incorporated into daily life to build cognitive reserve

Learning to Speak Alzheimer’s

Habilitation is a dementia care model created by Joanne Koenig Coste and detailed in her book Learning to Speak Alzheimer’s. The main idea is that by focusing on the skills that remain, there are many opportunities to continue to connect and enrich people’s lives throughout the disease. This concept is the basis for. This workshop, developed with permission from the author, which is appropriate for either family members or professionals.

Join us to
1. Describe the 5 tenets of Habilitation  
2. Identify strategies to promote moments of positivity, peace and connection for people living with dementia
3. Apply Habilitation theory to practice using real case scenarios

Living With Palliative Care

Palliative Care is surrounded by many misconceptions. With greater knowledge, patients and families could benefit from palliative care and healthcare professionals could use it to support patients with serious illness. Join us to learn more about palliative care, including how it differs from Hospice and how it can benefit patients facing serious illness. See video clips from a documentary film and education program called Living With Palliative Care, which shows how one 85-year-old woman’s end-of-life journey was transformed by palliative care.

Join us to
1. Define palliative care and distinguish it from Hospice
2. Outline a generalist level of palliative care knowledge
3. Demonstrate palliative care through an in-depth video-based case study
4. Discuss the benefits of choosing palliative care to address serious illness

Meaningful Connections Across Generations: One Model Program

Learn about a fun and successful program that decreased loneliness, strengthened intergenerational connection, and engaged a faith community during COVID. The model can be adapted to any faith community or community-based organization.

Join us to
1. Outline the project overview and proposed strategies 
2. Describe the engagement strategies and outcomes
3. Discuss lessons learned and applications to other kinds of intergenerational programs

Prevention of Compassion Fatigue & Burnout

Eldercare professionals are routinely exposed to traumatic stories in the course of their work. Case intensity can be high as family caregivers often wait until they are in crisis or near burnout before they contact professionals. It is important to recognize warning signs BEFORE the burnout stage to avoid the serious physical and mental health issues that often accompany burnout.

Join us to
1. Define the three elements of compassion fatigue
2. Recognize the physical and psychological warning signs of compassion fatigue
3. Explore a wide variety of strategies to address or prevent compassion fatigue and burnout

Resident Intimacy in Senior Living

The opportunity for socialization is one of the best benefits of senior living. It can also be one of the most controversial for families and staff when socialization turns to sexuality. Interest in intimacy and sexual expression doesn’t end at a particular age, with a diagnosis of dementia, or when a move is made from a private home to senior living. However, sexual behavior in senior living communities can raise multiple issues for staff, residents, and family members.

Join us to
1. Describe issues surrounding intimacy & sexual expression as people age, and for people with dementia who reside in senior living communities
2. Discuss the impact of staff attitude and family reactions to resident intimacy and sexual expression in senior living
3. Examine policy & practical approaches to resident intimacy in senior living that balance resident rights with staff duty to protect

Resilience in Times of Significant Change – for Eldercare Professionals

The worldwide coronavirus pandemic is testing both individual and community resilience in extreme ways. However, on a regular basis, older adults and family caregivers face adversity such as health changes, functional loss, limited resources, and multiple kinds of transitions. This workshop will examine ways eldercare professionals can strengthen resilience in older adults and family caregivers in times of significant change, while at the same time cultivating resilience in themselves.

Join us to
1. Identify factors in personal and community resilience
2. Apply strategies to bolster resilience in older adults and family caregivers
3. Discuss personal resilience strategies for eldercare professionals

Successful Communication Given Alzheimer’s Logic

Changes in communication patterns can frustrate both individuals with Alzheimer’s and the people around them. However, there’s often more logic than it would first appear. This workshop is set in the habilitation model of dementia care. It will help you crack the code in early to mid-stages of the illness, so you can continue to connect in meaningful and enriching ways.

Join us to
1. Decipher “Alzheimer’s logic” — there IS logic
2. Explore multiple communication strategies to connect with people in early- to mid-stage Alzheimer’s disease
3. Discuss the impact of emotions on communication throughout Alzheimer’s

Supporting LGBTQ Individuals with Dementia

While everyone with dementia experiences vulnerability, it can be even more complex for individuals who identify as LGBTQ, especially as care needs escalate. The number of people living with dementia and the number of people who identify as LGBTQ are both growing rapidly. Aging services professionals of all levels and roles will benefit from greater cultural competence in recognizing and anticipating issues to provide more dignified care to LGBTQ individuals living with dementia.

Join us to
1. Recognize specific issues people who identify as LGBTQ can face throughout dementia
2. Utilize case studies to describe the impact of stigma
3. Discuss implications for practice and policy to reduce discrimination and promote more dignified dementia care

The Emotional Journey Through Dementia Caregiving

This program charts new territory in describing the emotions experienced by dementia caregivers, and ways caregiver emotions impact how they provide care and accept services and strategies. As dementia incidence and prevalence rise, professionals with greater clarity about the emotional landscape will be better prepared to support dementia caregivers.

Join us to
1. Discuss why it’s important to gain clarity about the emotional experience of dementia caregivers
2. Map the emotional journey through dementia caregiving
3. Describe strategies to support dementia caregivers as they experience a range of emotions

Too Young? Too Old? Time to Change the Narrative

Have you ever been stereotyped because of your age? Join us to explore what ageism looks like and sounds like, and what you can do to change it. People of all ages are welcomed to this important conversation.

Join us to
1. Recognize what ageism looks and sounds like
2. Examine why ageism is such a big deal
3. Discover what you can do to change it

Understanding the Minds of People with Alzheimer’s

This is your chance to ask what goes on in the mind of someone with Alzheimer’s. Why do people with Alzheimer’s say what they say and do what they do? Why do they repeat the same things over and over? Why do they get lost while driving familiar routes? Why do they have trouble doing something one day, but can do it easily the next day? Understanding why can help determine how you can respond with less frustration, and how to create more moments of connection.

Join us to
1. Describe reasons people with Alzheimer’s act the way they do
2. Determine ways to respond with less frustration
3. Identify opportunities to create more moments of connection

When We Work Where They Live: Connecting Across Generations

How do life experiences, societal and cultural norms, expectations, bias, dementia, and life stage impact interactions between older adults and their caregivers? Join gerontologist Donna Fedus to examine ways of connecting across generations when you work where they live.

Join us to
1. Describe how older adults become who they are
2. Examine forms of bias that can interfere with intergenerational connection
3. Apply techniques that demonstrate respect for older adults when you work where they live

Working with Veterans with Dementia and PTSD

Veterans who had been in combat or otherwise experienced trauma may have been able to function day to day without major symptoms of PTSD… until they experienced dementia as older adults. These veterans may not have sought treatment for PTSD. However, with the loss of connection to present day reality orientation, and possible beliefs that they are back in time, old traumas can be triggered, regardless of whether the veterans ever recognized, experienced, or treated PTSD when they returned home. This program offers useful perspectives and practical strategies to current day caregivers of older veterans.  

Join us to
1. Describe typical veterans in today’s older generations, many of whom never sought treatment for PTSD
2. Discuss ways in which old traumas could be triggered for veterans living with dementia
3. Outline perspectives and care strategies for current day caregivers of older veterans living with dementia