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Category: Canada Posts

National Volunteer Week: Why Louise chooses to volunteer

National Volunteer Week: Why Louise chooses to volunteer

Thanks to my mother, I learned the values of being a volunteer at a young age. She set up a soup kitchen at my elementary school, ensuring that my classmates coming to school without lunch wouldn’t go hungry. When my brother and sister and I joined the Cubs, Brownies, and Girl Guides, my mother volunteered as a leader. She canvassed for various charities. She was always quick to help whenever someone asked.

Meet the Researchers: Debra Sheets, University of Victoria

Meet the Researchers: Debra Sheets, University of Victoria

For people with dementia and their caregivers, it can be difficult to find activities that strike the right balance between being supportive, being socially appropriate and, of course, being fun. As the disease progresses and abilities change, it’s common for friends to withdraw and activities to start to fall away. A person is left with few things that can offer joy, a sense of purpose and human connection. I’ve seen this firsthand—my father had dementia for 18 years. As it…

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“SMILE” – Helping dementia caregivers

“SMILE” – Helping dementia caregivers

Dr. Christopher Frank, of Kingston, Ontario, particularly appreciates the caregiver’s role—after all, he focuses on areas where caregivers provide crucial help, such as geriatric rehabilitation, acute care consultation and palliative care. In this guest blog, Dr. Frank shares five pieces of inspirational advice from one of his patient’s relatives, a caregiver herself.

Brain Awareness Week 2018: Mario’s three keys to living well

Brain Awareness Week 2018: Mario’s three keys to living well

Mario Gregorio resides in British Columbia. He currently lives with dementia. An advocate for dementia awareness, Mario was one of the faces of Alzheimer’s Awareness Month this past January. I’m celebrating my 70th birthday this year. The best decision I’ve ever made in my life was to seek an early diagnosis. I felt that I needed to take control of my medical situation. And I’m glad I did. An early diagnosis allowed me to research more about dementia. I knew…

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“I am a person with dementia and a person with rights.” (Part two)

“I am a person with dementia and a person with rights.” (Part two)

When we last left Phyllis Fehr, we heard about how her experiences inspired her to take on her current role as a leading advocate for human rights for people with dementia. (If you haven’t yet, check out part one of this series, Becoming a force for change—Phyllis Fehr’s story.) One of Phyllis’ current focuses is the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, an international human rights treaty that was adopted by the United Nations almost a decade ago….

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Meet the researchers: Matt Parsons, Memorial University

Meet the researchers: Matt Parsons, Memorial University

Ever since my first undergraduate neuroscience course, I’ve always been fascinated by the ways in which the brain forms and retains memories. Recently, however, I’ve had the misfortune of seeing first-hand the cruel progression of cognitive decline in family members with dementia. So, my desire to research Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias is fueled by my personal connection; by my passion for how we learn and make memories; and by my strong belief that by increasing our understanding of how…

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Let’s talk about dementia, mental illness and mental health

Let’s talk about dementia, mental illness and mental health

January 31 is Bell Let’s Talk Day, an initiative to encourage conversations, increase awareness and end the stigma around mental illness. One aspect of the conversation that’s not often talked about is mental health among older adults and seniors, and how this intersects with dementia. So today, let’s talk about it. Here are five things you should know about dementia, mental illness and mental health: 1) Dementia caregivers experience higher rates of depression than all other caregivers. Did you know…

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“I am a person with dementia and a person with rights.” (Part one)

“I am a person with dementia and a person with rights.” (Part one)

Part one: Becoming a force for change—Phyllis Fehr’s story This blog series is based on the webinar, “I am a person with dementia and a person with rights,” hosted by brainXchange and presented by Phyllis Fehr on December 13, 2017 (part one) and January 17, 2018 (part two). One day, Phyllis Fehr walked through the doors of a grocery store, and found confusion. Phyllis, who had been given a working diagnosis of early-onset Alzheimer’s along with Lewy Body dementia at…

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The importance of palliative care for people living with dementia

The importance of palliative care for people living with dementia

In her opening remarks to the Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology, Alzheimer Society of Canada CEO Pauline Tardif led with an alarming fact. “Right now, well over half a million Canadians are living with dementia—and the numbers keep growing,” she said. “Access to palliative care has become even more important today.” Pauline had taken to Parliament Hill to support Bill C-277, An Act providing for the development of a framework on palliative care in Canada. If passed,…

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