McCormick Dementia Services – Caregiver’s Corner – Social Work – Caregiver Tips

Caregiver Support

McCormick Support Groups and Services

During the COVID-19 closure all caregiver support groups and education series are being offered virtually using our secure Zoom account. Zoom is a web-based software program which allows participants to join with video and audio capabilities. Joining the meeting by phone only is also an option.

Virtual Support Groups are being held at their regularly scheduled times.  Please contact a social worker to register to attend a support group.

If you are not able to attend a virtual support group, our social workers are available via telephone to provide ongoing caregiver support.  If you have questions, are looking for resources, or need support, please contact us.

Caregiver Education Series

McCormick Dementia Services is excited to announce that we will be running our Caregiver Education Series virtually this fall. Powerful Tools for Caregivers and the McCormick Enhanced Caregiver Education Series will both be offered online using Zoom. Our goal is to make these classes as interactive as possible even though we will not be meeting in person. Using Zoom, we will be able to interact and share with each other, have small group discussions and case studies, and be able to answer your questions during each session. Descriptions of each series are listed below.

Powerful Tools for Caregivers Series

This six-week workshop provides helpful tips and information for caregivers of people with dementia and addresses such areas as reducing personal stress, communicating effectively in challenging situations, caring for a spouse, managing transitions and making tough caregiving decisions. This course is delivered by McCormick Dementia Services social workers in cooperation with the South West Self-Management Program, and includes helpful instruction from an experienced caregiver of someone with dementia.

Dates: will be rescheduled to 2021
Time: 6:30 – 8:00 p.m.

Registration for each series is required as there are limited spaces available. To complete your registration, please contact Shelley at 519-439-9336, ext. 2347.

McCormick Enhanced Caregiver Education Series

The McCormick Enhanced Caregiver Education Series is comprised of four separate series.
Participants are welcome to enroll in all four series or they can pick and choose the ones that meet their needs.

Engaging a person with dementia in meaningful activities can help maintain their sense of dignity and self-worth. A dementia diagnosis does not mean that the individual no longer has the interest or ability to contribute to and engage with the world around them. Participants will learn about what meaningful activities are and why they are important for people with dementia, how the stage of dementia impacts activity, and ways to identify a person’s skills, strengths, and abilities. Participants will learn and practice how to plan and initiate meaningful activities for the person they are caring for. This series is two classes.

Dates: Mondays – September 21 and 28
Time: 10:00 – 11:15 a.m.

Registration for each series is required as there are limited spaces available. To complete your registration, please contact Shelley at 519-439-9336, ext. 2347.

Communication is the most basic human connection and it has the tendency to evolve throughout the stages of dementia. Learning effective communication strategies can help reduce the stress and challenges of dementia for both the caregiver and care partner. Participants will gain a more in-depth understanding of how dementia impacts the way a person communicates as well as how to recognize changes in the person they are caring for. Participants will learn effective communication strategies and will have the opportunity to practice these communication strategies with peers so that they are more comfortable using them at home. This series is three classes.

Dates: Mondays – October 5, 19 and 26
Time: 10:00 – 11:15 a.m.

Registration for each series is required as there are limited spaces available. To complete your registration, please contact Shelley at 519-439-9336, ext. 2347.

Responsive behaviours in people with dementia can sometimes confuse and challenge caregivers. Gaining an understanding of these behaviours, what they are and why they are happening can assist caregivers not only to manage their own individual responses, but also to help navigate the difficulties that responsive behaviours can bring to the caregiving relationship. This series teaches participants a variety of approaches to managing responsive behaviours and provides the opportunity to practice these approaches with peers so they are comfortable using them with the person they are caring for. This series is three classes.

Dates: Mondays -November 2, 9 and 16
Time: 10:00 – 11:15 a.m.

Registration for each series is required as there are limited spaces available. To complete your registration, please contact Shelley at 519-439-9336, ext. 2347.

Learning to adapt to the changes involved in managing the activities of daily living (ADLs) for someone with dementia can help reduce stress and relieve the challenges of caregiving. This series teaches strategies and techniques that can assist caregivers in helping their loved ones take care of themselves, such as dressing, bathing, eating, and toileting. It also looks at mobility challenges and different mobility aids. Presenters will provide examples of equipment that can be used to help with ADLs. This series is two classes.

Dates: Mondays – November 23 and 30
Time: 10:00 – 11:15 a.m

Registration for each series is required as there are limited spaces available. To complete your registration, please contact Shelley at 519-439-9336, ext. 2347.

Support Groups

Frontotemporal Dementia (FTD) Caregiver Support Group
Lewy Body and Parkinson’s Disease Dementia Caregiver Support Group
Caregiver Support Group
Spousal Support Group

Caregivers of someone living with frontotemporal dementia (FTD) will benefit from understanding the unique challenges and opportunities that arise from connecting with others in similar situations. This group provides a monthly forum to share successes and problem solve around the particular challenges that occur with being a caregiver of someone with this lesser-known form of dementia.

First Wednesday of the month
Time: 7:00-8:30 p.m.

Contact your social worker to discuss this support group and complete your registration.

This group addresses the particular challenges of caring for someone living with Lewy Body/Parkinson’s disease dementia, which differs in many ways from the treatment approaches used for the more common types of dementia, such as Alzheimer disease.

Third Wednesday of the month
Time: 1:00-2:30 p.m.

Contact your social worker to discuss this support group and complete your registration.

Making connections with other caregivers of people living with dementia helps alleviate feelings of loneliness and provides a much-needed support network. Participants learn from each other and share their challenges and successes in a safe, confidential setting. Participants often find that the group provides a helpful way to problem solve around the challenges that occur from being a caregiver of someone with dementia.

1st Wednesday of the month
Time: 7:00-8:30 p.m.

Contact your social worker to discuss this support group and complete your registration.

Living with a spouse who has dementia brings with it the unique challenges of incorporating a caregiving role into the spousal relationship. We have worked with hundreds of people to help them manage their spouse’s dementia journey, while enabling them to maintain the relationship through its varying stages. Group sessions help promote advanced knowledge and skills in dementia care and provide an environment that is supportive, educational and social, and one that celebrates the successes in caregiving.

2nd and 4th Wednesday of the month
Time: 10:00-11:30 a.m. or 1:00-2:30 p.m.

Contact your social worker to discuss this support group and complete your registration.

Resources

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Click to open the Spare a Thought for Dementia website.
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For more information or to register with Medic Alert, click here.
Click to open the Community Support Services website.

Videos

Welcome to Caregiver's Corner

The Importance of Routine and Structure

Understanding Verbal Repetition

Changes in Communication

Understanding Shadowing Behaviour

Understanding New or Changed Behaviour

Home Safety and Wandering