Care to Chat Wrap Up: Cultivating dementia-friendly communities and care

Last month, we held our sold-out Care to Chat titled Cultivating Compassionate Communities: Best Practices in Caring for People Living with Dementia. Our esteemed panelists brought invaluable insights and strategies aimed at enhancing the quality of life for individuals living with dementia. The discussion was not only enlightening, but also deeply touching and personal for both speakers and attendees alike.

Our moderator, veteran broadcaster Jody Vance, introduced the session through her poignant personal story of caring for her father who had lived with dementia, and now her mother. Paul Blanchet, family representative and advocate, also brought his personal experience, being a husband and caregiver of his wife who had dementia. He discussed the significance of care staff adopting a person-centred and family-centred approach, emphasizing the necessity to support and educate everyone involved.

Panelist Jen Lyle, CEO of Alzheimer Society of BC, underscored the significance of intergenerational activities, urging attendees to think about proactive ways of partnering with local schools or embracing innovative approaches like incorporating daycares within care homes to further bolder dementia care initiatives. She also brought attention to modifiable risk factors, emphasizing the critical role of early intervention in dementia care, which she highlighted as pivotal compared to relying solely on medical breakthroughs.

Co-Founder of the Village Langley, Elroy Jespersen, delved into the innovative concept of a Dementia Village, highlighting the need to depart from conventional norms when designing care homes. He issued a compelling call to attendees to advocate for a care home design that prioritized the unique needs of individuals living with dementia.

All panelists, also including Clinical Consultant and PAC Certified Independent Trainer Jennifer Roach, debunked the myth that a dementia diagnosis inevitably diminishes one’s quality of life, stressing the urgency of early societal education to dispel such misconceptions, emphasizing the need to control and discuss dementia properly rather than relegating it to silence.


The conversation later delved into the imperative for comprehensive staff training, exploring innovative methods to deliver education effectively within time constraints, including education on residents.

View photos of the event on our Flickr or in the gallery below.


Thank you to our 2023-24 Care to Chat sponsors who help make these conversations possible!

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