Dementia Friends Regional Update: Area Agency on Aging and Disabilities of SW WA and HOPE Dementia Support

April 29, 2024

Community Stories, Resources, News, Dementia Friends, Dementia-Friendly Community

Awareness about dementia is growing in Clark County due to the leadership and support at the Area Agency on Aging and Disabilities of Southwest WA and HOPE Dementia Support, Regional Lead Organizations in Clark County for Dementia Friends Washington.

Successful Dementia Friends Information Sessions were conducted both within the faith-based community and with WSU's BSN and Human Development programs, demonstrating a diverse outreach. Information Sessions were also integrated into C-Tran's onboarding training for new hires, a move applauded by Tim Nelson, C-Tran's Training Supervisor, who noted the positive reception from staff and trainers alike.

“The [Dementia Friends Information Sessions] that we have gotten done have been well received by staff. The trainers have all enjoyed the presentation that you have built for us.”- Tim Nelson, C-Tran Training Supervisor

Plans for expansion of the Dementia Friends program into Cowlitz County are underway. Chasity Charette, Dementia Friends Regional Coordinator, is moving forward with an approved project plan and is in the initial phases of its implementation. She is currently recruiting for volunteers to join the Cowlitz County Dementia Friends committee.

A monthly Memory Café has also been running successfully. On April 24th, the Memory Café hosted a panel that included Mayor Anne McEnery-Ogle. The panelists took questions and gave updates about Clark County becoming dementia friendly.

There have been some challenges involving businesses in the area with Dementia Friends and Dementia Friendly efforts. Chasity shares, “Undeterred, we remain steadfast in our commitment, ready to adapt and devise alternative strategies to encourage business participation.”

Exciting news: A Dementia Friends Information session has been scheduled for May 21st with Johnson-Bixby (Financial Advocates) and they have invited other businesses that include other financial advocates, as well as lawyers that specifically help create and manage wills, trusts, etc. This session will be around 60 individuals in attendance.

Interested in joining the Cowlitz County Dementia Friends Committee? Are you a business seeking more information about hosting a Dementia Friends session and become dementia friendly? Contact Chasity Charette, Regional Coordinator for Clark and Cowlitz Counties:, - Katie Zeitler

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