Tag Archives: Dementia Awareness Month 2020

Amy Shives speaks about stigma at 2015 Alzheimer’s Forum

Amy Shives is one of the eight founding members of Dementia Alliance International, and one of the first people with a diangosis of dementia to speak at an Alzheimers Society conference. In 2015, she gave an important presentation on her diagnosis, and on stigma. As Dementia Awareness Month 2020 is coming to a close soon, we have decided to highlight two of our founding members, starting with Amy.

Amy says she hopes to dispel some of the myths of this disease; she has dementia, of the Alzheimer’s type  – A-typical, and she says she  has never been typical in her whole life, so she is comfortable with this diagnosis! It seems most people with dementia are not typical, as everyone experiences it differently. She also asks not to be labelled as a sufferer.

You will not be sorry you watched this brilliant and extremely entertaining short presentation.

Thank you Amy, for being a founding member of DAI.

Since you’re here…

… we’re asking readers like you to support our members, by donating to our organization.

With more than 50 million people living with dementia, and the Coronavirus pandemic causing everyone to operate in a virtual world, our work has never been more important.

Every contribution, however big or small, is so valuable to our work of supporting people diagnosed with any type of dementia to live more positively, and with a greater sense of hope.  Thank you.

Help more people with dementia like Amy to continue to have a voice, by donating to DAI.

 

DAI Masterclass 2: My conversation with my doctor

 

 

During September in 2012, DAI hosted four Masterclasses, and to change the pace a little this year for our daily #DAM2020 blog series, on Day 28 of Dementia Awareness Month 2020, we are posting the second one, which is about the conversation with your doctor, when you are worried about cognitive changes.

Included on the panel are two medical doctors, Dr Jennifer Bute and Dr David Kramer, who were both working as medical doctors when diangosed with dementia.  Much of the advice is still extremely relevant to getting a diagnosis today, but it is also very useful advice once diagnosed, for all follow up appointments.

Since you’re here…

… we’re asking readers like you to support our members, by donating to our organization.

With more than 50 million people living with dementia, and the Coronavirus pandemic causing everyone to operate in a virtual world,  our work has never been more important.

Every contribution, however big or small, is so valuable to our work of supporting people diagnosed with any type of dementia to live more positively, and with a greater sense of hope.  Thank  you.

Support DAI to host more webinars like this, by donating today.

Graeme Atkins shares his songs on YouTube

 

 

Graeme Atkins is the 2020 winner of the Richard Taylor Advocates Award, and on Day 27 of Dementia Awareness Month, we are privileged to  highlight some of the songs Graeme, with the support of his wife Susan, has composed and performed.

Graeme was diagnosed with Younger Onset Dementia in 2009, and he says ‘his dementia story’ is actually ‘our dementia story’, as it is his partner Susan’s story as well. DAI is delighted to share two his songs with you here today. You can also read a more detailed blog about his story here, an Interview with myself.

Thank you Graeme. We are so glad  you found DAI.

Al Zheimer’s, by Graeme Atkins

Song for DAI, by Graeme Atkins

Since you’re here…

… we’re asking readers like you to support our members, by donating to our organizaton.

With more than 50 million people living with dementia, and the Coronavirus pandemic causing everyone to operate in a virtual world,  our work has never been more important.

Every contribution, however big or small, is so valuable to our work of supporting people diagnosed with any type of dementia to live more positively, and with a greater sense of hope.  Thank  you.

Help more people diagnosed with dementia like Graeme by  supporting DAI.

Bill Yeates shares why he is glad he found DAI

On Day 26 of Dementia Awareness Month 2020, Bill Yeates shares with us why he is glad he found DAI. Thank you Bill, we are all glad you found DAI too.

My name is Bill Yeates and I live on the northern beaches in Sydney, Australia. I was diagnosed with Younger Onset Alzheimer’s Disease last year, at the age of 59.

As devastating as this diagnosis was, it has also opened my eyes, as I now need to create a new life based on new dreams and new hopes for the future.

I am glad that I found DAI, because without their support and encouragement, I doubt whether I would have had the strength, motivation and will power needed to make this journey. In saying this, I believe that there is something very special in being able to talk freely with other DAI members, about the challenges, issues and demands that we face on a daily basis.

To me, it’s like being amongst your closest friends – where everyone is non-judgemental, great listeners and full of compassion.

It reminds me of a definition of a true friend that I recently came across.

Someone who has your back, no matter what happens.

I am glad that I found DAI because I have learnt that being an advocate is more than just telling your story. For me, it’s also about creating an awareness and acceptance in our community and fighting for the rights of people with mental illnesses, such as Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia, on a national and global scale. Of which DAI has an outstanding record, that is internationally recognised.

Finally, I am glad that I found DAI because through my involvement in the Brain Health group, they have been instrumental in motivating me to create my own strategy, in terms of how I can manage my Alzheimer’s Disease on a daily basis.

Based on the concept of positivity, and using the dimensions of Brain, Heart, Mind and Soul, I have created my own ‘leaves of positivity’ which represent the actions and changes to my life that I have made. When joined together, they form my Tree of Awakening your Positivity.

As a DAI member, if you are interested in learning about this approach, please go to my website… 

Thank you for taking the time to listen to my story about why I am glad that I found DAI. I hope that this important month of September, brings everyone, alot of hope, joy and happiness for the future.

Since you’re here…

… we’re asking readers like you to support our members, by donating to our organizaton.

With more than 50 million people living with dementia, and the Coronavisus pandemic causing everyone to operate in a virtual world,  our work has never been more important.

Every contribution, however big or small, is so valuable to our work of supporting people diagnosed with any type of dementia to live more positively, and with a greater sense of hope.  Thank  you.

Help more people  like Bill by  supporting DAI.

Diana Blackwelder shares why she is glad she found DAI

On day 22 of Dementia Awareness Month #DAM2020 we are pleased to hear from Diana Blackwelder on why she is glad she found DAI. Diana is a Board member, on our Action group, and has been a back up host for our Friday peer to peer support groups. She is involved with advocacy through DAI, and her local chapter, as well as through being involved in dementia research. Diana has also been very involved in supporting this campaign, by interviewing other DAI members as they share their stories this month.

Thank you Diana. We are really glad you found DAI.

Since you’re here…

… we’re asking readers like you to support our members, by donating to our organizaton.

With more than 50 million people living with dementia, and the Coronavisus pandemic causing everyone to operate in a virtual world,  our work has never been more important.

Every contribution, however big or small, is so valuable to our work of supporting people diagnosed with any type of dementia to live more positively, and with a greater sense of hope.  Thank  you.

Help more people like Diana today, by  supporting DAI

Graeme Atkins wins the Richard Taylor Advocates Award in 2020

DAI is pleased to announce the recipient of the 2020 Richard Taylor Advocates Award, recognised on World Alzheimer’s Day 21 September 2020. This year it goes to DAI member Graeme Atkins from Australia for his outstanding service to others living with dementia, and his commitment to DAI’s  mission and vision of a world where ALL people are valued and included.

Graeme was diagnosed with the younger onset Alzheimer’s type of dementia in 2009. He has been an advocate for improving outcomes for people ith dementia, in particular by composing and performing songs about being diagnosed, or living with dementia.  Graeme says he can only do what he does, because of the love and support of his wife Susan,  also lovingly known, as we now say in DAI thanks to our Chair Kate Swaffer, as his Back Up Brain.

DAI is proud to call Graeme their ‘Resident Rec. (or is that wreck?) Officer! Thanks for everything that you continue to do Graeme.

Since you’re here…

… we’re asking readers like you to support our members, by donating to our organizaton.

You can also read more of Graeme’s story here.

With more than 50 million people living with dementia, and the Coronavisus pandemic causing everyone to operate in a virtual world,  our work has never been more important.

Every contribution, however big or small, is so valuable to our work of supporting people diagnosed with any type of dementia to live more positively, and with a greater sense of hope.  Thank  you.

Help more people like Graeme today, by  supporting DAI.

Jane Callachan shares why she is glad she found DAI #DAM2020

DAI member Jane Callachan lives in Salem, Massachusetts and as part of our Dementia Awareness Month series of vlogs/blogs, shares why she is glad she joined DAI. It is already day 20 of this campaign, and we hope you are enjoying hearing from our members…

Jane was diagnosed with younger onset dementia aged 55, and she regularly joins the Friday afternoon DAI peer to peer support group. One of the best things about these groups, Jane said, is that she can join online, and doesn’t have to drive to one!

DAI has helped help Jane feel much more independent, and has introduced her to others who are living positively, in spite of dementia. “DAI really does make a difference”.

Thank you Jane. We are glad you found DAI.

Since you’re here…

… we’re asking readers like you to support our members, by donating to our organizaton.

With more than 50 million people living with dementia, and the Coronavisus pandemic causing everyone to operate in a virtual world,  our work has never been more important.

Every contribution, however big or small, is so valuable to our work of supporting people diagnosed with any type of dementia to live more positively, and with a greater sense of hope.  Thank  you.

Help more people like Jane today, by  supporting our Virtual Art Auction.

Gait Retraining and Dementia, by A/Prof James McLoughlin

In July this year, DAI hosted a webinar Gait retraining and Dementia, by A/Prof James McLoughlin. It was very well attended, and we are pleased to share it during Dementia Awareness Month 2020.

James is an Associate Professor at Flinders University in Adelaide. He has a Bachelor of Applied Science (Physio), a MSc(Clinical Neuroscience), and a PhD, and is an experienced neurological physiotherapist and Director of Advanced Neuro Rehab in South Australia, a neurological and vestibular rehabilitation clinic.

James is passionate in promoting best practice for people with neurological & vestibular conditions. He has previously presented to us on Rehabilitation and Dementia.

About the Webinar: People with all forms of dementia can experience changes to their walking and balance. There are many factors that can contribute to these issues that can be targeted within an individualised rehabilitation program. James will discuss some of the proactive ways neurological physiotherapy can help with treatment, training and support.

Watch the webinar recording  here:

#DAM2020 #DAIisLifeChanging #WAM2020

Make sure you get involved in the DAI Art Auction this week.

Jerry Wylie and the Dementia Warriors #DAM2020

Today was our monthly Cafe Le Brain, and unfortunately for everyone, one of the co hosts’ internet died, so it was a rather disjointed cafe! We had a few topics on the agenda, including with Jerry Wylie’s permission, watching a video made about setting his local support group, called the Dementia Warriors.

Jerry Wylie, USA

Therefore to support those who missed out on the video at our Cafe, for Day 16 of Dementia Awareness Month #DAM2020 #WAM2020, we are not only adding that video here, we are highlighting Jerry’s journey from diagnosis to now, by posting two videos highlighting his incredible advocacy.

The first is a video recording of a presentation he gave at the ADI conference in Chicago in 2018. The second is a video that was made about setting up his local support group. It has been an incredible journey to partlt share with him; from diagnosis, to depression, to renewed purpose.

Thank you Jerry.

We are so glad DAI was the catalyst to help you see there is still a good life to live, in spite of dementia.

Jerry presents at the ADI Conference in Chicago

As a keynote speaker at the ADI Conference in Chicago in 2018, Jerry shared his deeply personal story, which included him sharing how he had been depressed and even suicidal after his diagnosis, and his passion became one of helping to stop other people’s lives being thrown in the bin after their diagnosis like his was!

People who become empowered to live positively and with renewed meaning and purpose is exactly one of the outcomes the original founders of DAI dreamed of. Life is short, so DAI works towards actively supporting people to get back to living their own lives, and also to have fun again.

Jerry Wylie, speaks on founding the Dementia Warriors.

Jerry often said that joining DAI saved his life, and attending a support group over zoom was the first time he had smiled or laughed since his diagnosis. He is now living the his life with true purpose ad passion, and we all applaud and congratulate him for having the tenacity to keep advocating, until this particular dream was achieved.

Well done Jerry, we hope other members may be inspired to follow you, and we are all very proud of what you have achieved, and how you continue to support families facing dementia.

Read the brochure about Jerry’s exciting Dementia Warriors support group.

Christine Thelker on why she is glad she found DAI #DAM2020

It is Day 14 of Dementia Awareness Month 2020 #DAM2020 and remarkably, we’re almost half way through for our daily vlog/blog series.

For todays post, Christine Thelker from Canada shares with us all why she is glad she found Dementia Alliance International (DAI). She agrees that DAI has been Life Changing for her, and hears it has been for so many others, and Christine advocates for other people living with dementia in Canada and all over the world.

You should also check out her new website, and recently published book, For this I am grateful.

Thank you Christine. We are all glad you found DAI

Since you’re here…

… we’re asking readers like you to support our members, by donating to our organizaton.

With more than 50 million people living with dementia, and the Coronavisus pandemic causing everyone to operate in a virtual world,  our work has never been more important.

Every contribution, however big or small, is so valuable to our work of supporting people diagnosed with any type of dementia to live more positively, and with a greater sense of hope.  Thank  you.

Please join the Monday Science Podcast fundraiser to support more people with dementia like Christine.

#DAIisLifeChanging