Our Connections Matter
Alzheimer Society of Perth County

January 2022 - Issue 1

Connections That Matter

Hello, Friend!

We hope this newsletter finds you well. During this time, our phone lines remain open. If you need to reach our counselling staff, or have questions about programs and services, please call 519-271-1910.

We also invite you to keep checking the online calendar to learn about upcoming online events and programs. You will also be able to catch up on any newsletters you may have missed.

Happy reading!

In this edition:

  1. What’s happening in Perth County?
  2. What’s happening across Ontario? Provincial social recreation programs, webinars, and more!
  3. Join the Quest for Kindness and make Kind-nections this January!
  4. This Alzheimer’s Awareness Month, let us be your First Link
  5. The Dementia Friendly Canada Project has launched!
  6. Tips on Creating Resolutions for the New Year!
  7. Survey: Improving Homecare for People living with Dementia in Ontario

What's happening in Perth County?

The Soup's On Trail is back for 2022!

At this time, we have decided to postpone our January 15 Soup’s On Trail due to the ongoing concern of covid transmission in our community. Please visit our website for any updates.

Caregiver Support Groups

Caregiver support groups are an opportunity to connect with other caregivers, enhance your understanding of dementia, and develop practical strategies for supporting a person living with dementia. At this time, all groups remain virtual, although we will be moving toward in-person groups in the New Year, when Huron Perth Public Health guidelines permit.

All caregivers who are registered clients are welcome to attend. Registration is required by contacting the group facilitator as noted below. If you have any questions about attending a Caregiver Support Group, please contact the group facilitator or your assigned First Link Counsellor at 519-271-1910 or 1-888-797-1882.


Tuesday, January 4th 6:30 - 8:00 pm
Register with Shannon at ext. 29 or sluke@alzheimerperthcounty.com

Thursday, January 6th 10:00 - 11:30 am
Register with Brenda at ext. 25 or bobrien@alzheimerperthcounty.com

Wednesday, January 12th 1:30 - 3:30 pm
Register with Shannon at ext. 29 or sluke@alzheimerperthcounty.com

Tuesday, January 18th 1:30 - 3:00 pm
Register with Shelley at ext. 26 or sobermayer@alzheimerperthcounty.com

First Week of February

Tuesday, February 1st 6:30 - 8:00 pm
Register with Shannon at ext. 29 or sluke@alzheimerperthcounty.com

Thursday, February 3rd 10:00 - 11:30 am
Register with Jaclyn at ext. 28 or jturpin@alzheimerperthcounty.com

Education Hour

Join us for this ongoing education program, suitable for care partners and people living with a dementia diagnosis. For one hour at a time, we will explore different topics of interest in-depth.

Please pre-register for each session individually by clicking the links below:

Date: Thursday, January 13th from 12:00 - 1:00pm

Topic: Brain Health and Happiness

Please click here: Pre-register

Thursday, January 27th from 12:00 - 1:00pm

Topic: Dementia 101

Please click here: Pre-register

Thursday, February 10th from 12:00 - 1:00pm

Topic: Keeping Safe when Out and About

Please click here: Pre-register

Upcoming Education Programming

Note: Due to recent changes in guidelines from the Huron Perth Public Health, all education will be offered virtually at this time. Those programs that require in-person facilitation (i.e., Taking Control of Our Lives) will be offered as soon as guidelines permit.

U-FIRST for Care Partners education program supports Care Partners who are caring for someone experiencing behaviour changes caused by dementia. The goal of this program is to reduce behaviour changes using the U-First framework, enhance your well-being and the wellbeing of the person who is experiencing behaviour changes, and improve collaboration among all team members. The program will be offered virtually over 6 - 90-minute sessions.

Dates and Time: Thursday, January 20, 27; February 3, 10, 17 & 24 from 6:30 - 8:00 pm

Please register by contacting Christy 519-271-1910 ext. 21 or by email cbannerman@alzheimerperthcounty.com or Shelley 519- 271-1910 ext. 26 or by email sobermayer@alzheimerperthcounty.com.

First Link Learning Series: Care in the Later Stages

This four-week program is designed for Care Partners who are supporting a loved one who is living with later-stage dementia. These 2-hour sessions focus on dementia in the late and end of life stages and the role Care Partners can play in caring for and enhancing quality of life. The program will be offered virtually over four weeks.

Dates and Time: Monday, January 24, 31; February 7 & 14 from 1:30 - 3:30 pm

Please register by contacting Christy by phone at 519-271-1910 ext. 21 or email: cbannerman@alzheimerperthcounty.com

Winter Book Club

Are you a caregiver or community member interested in learning more about dementia in a more casual form of learning? Consider joining our Winter Book Club. We will be diving into Lisa Genova’s book “Still Alice”. We will meet virtually over 5 sessions from mid-January through March to discuss and share insights and reactions to this New York Times bestseller.

Dates and Time: Tuesday, January 25; February 8 & 22; March 8 & 22 from 12:00 - 1:00pm

Please register by contacting Christy by phone at 519-271-1910 ext. 21 or email: cbannerman@alzheimerperthcounty.com

Social Recreation Programming

The Alzheimer Society of Perth County Virtual Social Recreation page continues to be updated regularly. Please click here to check out the latest updates!

Virtual Paint Party

Staying active and socialization are two vital parts of aging well. The Alzheimer Society of Perth County in partnership with Vanessa at Kind-Hearted Studio has created a Virtual Paint Party, a program for those living with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias and their care partners. The program encourages participants to be creative and social.

This program runs for 1.5 hours virtually through Zoom. Materials required to participate in this program will be delivered to the homes of registered clients prior to program start.

Advanced registration is required by calling Pamela at 519-271-1910 at ext. 27 or pbalfour@alzheimerperthcounty.com. Limited spaces are available for Tuesday, January 19 from 10:30 - 12:00 pm.

Minds in Motion

This program incorporates physical activity and mental stimulation for people with early to mid-stages of dementia and their care partners. Each session offers gentle and easy to follow physical activities led by a certified senior fitness instructor and engaging social activities focused on building personal skills. Advanced registration is required for in person Minds in Motion by calling Pamela at 519-271-1910 ext. 27 or pbalfour@alzheimerperthcounty.com.

In Person:

Stratford - Tuesday, January 11 - March 1 from 10:30am - 12:30pm

St. Marys - Thursday, January 13 - March 3 from 1:00 - 3:00pm


Monday, January 10 - March 7 (no program on Feb 21) from 2:00 - 3:30pm

What's happening across Ontario? Provincial social recreation programs, webinars, and more!

CARERS Program for Adult Children

When: Thursdays starting on February 3 from 9:30 AM to 11:30 AM

This 8-week online program is for adult children of people with mid- to late-stage dementia living in the community. Developed by the Reitman Centre at Mount Sinai Hospital, CARERS is a comprehensive dementia care program that supports problem-solving skill development and introduces the innovative use of standardized patients actors trained to simulate real-life situations so that caregivers, guided by expert clinical coaches, will learn how to address communication challenges.

For more information, contact Katie MacLean at kmaclean@alz.to or to register, click here.

Virtual Art Talks with Art Gallery Ontario (AGO)

When: Monthly on TUESDAYS — January 18, February 15, March 15, from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM

The AGO is offering engaging small group virtual art talks helping to explore their collection through conversation, exchanging ideas and observations about the selected artworks. This is a one-hour virtual art talk hosted on Zoom. The program is designed for people living with dementia and their caregivers. The art talk is facilitated by an experienced AGO Art Educator and is supported by Alzheimer Society of Toronto’s volunteers.

Select Virtual Art Talks on January 18 on the AST Calendar here.

For more information, contact Katie Berkelmans, Recreation and Volunteer Programs Manager, at kberkelmans@alz.to

Join the Quest for Kindness and make Kind-nections this January

The Quest for Kindness is here and it’s time to spread kindness and cheer!

This event is the perfect opportunity to come together with participants from across Ontario to help make your community a kinder place for those living with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia by making at least 30 kind-nections by completing a series of acts of kindness in the Kindness Centre.

Throughout the month, help us fundraise to reach our goal of $1 million to support crucial programs and services offered by local Alzheimer Societies across Ontario! Want a way to show your kindness? Order our locally printed Kind-nections Tee.

Haven’t registered yet? What are you waiting for?! Register here.

On January 29, the final day of the Quest for Kindness, be sure to catch the Toronto Sign, the CN Tower and Niagara Falls light up in blue and white in to mark the end of the Quest for Kindness as well as to honour Alzheimer’s Awareness Month! Can’t make it in person? Watch the CN Tower light show online here beginning at sunset and the Niagara Falls light up here beginning at 10:00 PM (EST).

This Alzheimer’s Awareness Month, let us be your First Link

At the Alzheimer Society, we continuously strive to educate and support those who suspect that they may have dementia, been recently diagnosed with, or are currently living with dementia. We want to ensure that their needs are met early and throughout their lives living with dementia.

With more than half a million Canadians living with dementia today, a number expected to reach a million in less than 10 years, it is imperative that we educate our society while working to fight the stigma surrounding dementia. It’s also time for care partners to understand they are not alone.

The Alzheimer Society’s First Link program serves almost a quarter of people with a dementia diagnosis in Canada and we want to see that number grow. This Alzheimer’s Awareness month, we will continue to campaign and motivate those diagnosed with the disease to make the Alzheimer Society their First Link!

Find out more about what the Alzheimer Society and First Link can do for people recently diagnosed with dementia by visiting firstlinkontario.ca.

The Dementia Friendly Canada Project has Launched!

We are pleased to share an exciting new initiative from the Dementia-Friendly Canada project!

One of the project’s goals is to train Canada’s workforce to be dementia friendly, and one way we are doing this is by developing free tools and resources in order to give Canadian’s knowledge and confidence when it comes to supporting and including people affected by dementia. We are pleased to announce our Building Dementia-Friendly Communities course.

The course will provide a foundational knowledge of dementia, and outline the considerations that organizations can include in their social and physical environments in order to better support and include people living with dementia. The information is practical and can be applied to people from all levels of the organization from customer-facing staff, to management, and to key decision makers.

The course consists of the following four modules, and are tailored to each of the three sectors:

  • What is a dementia-friendly community? An introduction to the concept and dementia friendly efforts at the community level.
  • Dementia-friendly interactions: Social environment considerations, such as ways you can communicate effectively with someone living with dementia.
  • Dementia-friendly spaces: Physical environment considerations, such as ways you can optimize your space to be dementia-friendly.
  • Dementia-friendly policies, practices and services for organizations: Provides specific scenarios and recommendations.

This training makes it possible for local individuals, businesses, and organizations to make a real and important difference for the people affected by dementia that they interact with on a daily basis. To register for the course, click here.

If you have questions about these courses or the Dementia-Friendly Canada project please contact Heather Cowie, National Project Manager at hcowie@alzheimerbc.org.

Tips on Creating Resolutions for the New Year!

Start the new year off right by creating resolutions for 2022! It’s the perfect opportunity whether you’re a person living with dementia, a care partner, or a family member to help you learn, grown and enrich your life in a positive way.

If you’re a person living with dementia, we have put together a few resolutions that you can adopt for 2022 that could help you stay happy, healthy, and fulfilled throughout the year.

  1. Keep physically and mentally active. Take up a new hobby like drawing, puzzles, or even simple exercises and stretching once a day.
  2. Reflect on your days by keeping a diary or journal that will help you recount the events of the day and how you were feeling.
  3. Stay social! Set up a weekly or monthly phone call with friends and family to stay engaged.

If these don’t work for you, try to create your own! Do whatever is most important to you.

Survey: Improving Homecare for People living with Dementia in Ontario

Participate in an online survey for a chance to win a $25 gift card!

Eligible participants (Ontario only):

  • People living with mild to moderate dementia receiving homecare.
  • Loved ones of people living with dementia receiving homecare.
  • Professional homecare providers (including PSWs, nurses, physical therapists, occupational therapists, rehabilitation therapists).

To view the full flyer, click here.

To take the survey, click here.

If you have any questions, please email evan.foster@mail.utoronto.ca or call 647-933-1330.

Donate Now

People living with Alzheimer’s and dementia are especially vulnerable at this time, if you are able to, please consider supporting the essential services and programs that benefit this community.

Our mailing address is:
1020 Ontario Street, Unit 5
Stratford, Ontario N5A 6Z3

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