January is Alzheimer Awareness Month. The aim is to help people live well with dementia. (submitted)

Alzheimer awareness campaign aims to build support, understanding

January is national Alzheimer Awareness Month.

Cowichan Valley residents are being asked to join a national awareness campaign to challenge public perceptions of what it means to live with dementia.

January is national Alzheimer Awareness Month. The 2018 campaign aims to convert judgment into compassion and assumptions into understanding so that people with dementia feel supported in the local community.

The Alzheimer Society of B.C. is releasing findings of a new survey to help kick off its new social awareness campaign — I live with dementia. Let me help you understand — to spark conversations and encourage the Cowichan Valley residents to see dementia differently.

“Stigma significantly affects the well-being of people living with dementia,” says Jane Hope, support and education coordinator for the Alzheimer Society of B.C. for the Cowichan Valley and North/Central Vancouver Island. “In order to build a dementia-friendly society, we need to move away from fear and denial of the disease, towards awareness and understanding.”

To tackle stigma, the Alzheimer Society is letting the experts — people affected by dementia — do the talking. One of these experts is Cindy Player of Victoria. Cindy has experienced stigma from people when they’ve learned about her diagnosis.

“I feel better when I’m honest,” Cindy said. “In spite of the risks, there’s a benefit for me in being open about living with dementia.”

Cindy and others invite the Cowichan Valley residents to hear their inspiring stories and take a few pointers from them on how to be open and accepting towards people living with dementia.

Their stories are featured on a dedicated campaign website, where visitors will also find tips on how to be more dementia friendly, activities to test their knowledge, and other resources to take action against stigma and be better informed about a disease that has the potential to affect every single one of us.

To help stop stigma and read the full survey, visit ilivewithdementia.ca – and use the hashtag #ilivewithdementia to help spread the word.

Dementia is one of the country’s most pressing health issues. The Society offers a variety of assistance to area families and other caregivers, such as the First Link Dementia Helpline. It can be reached at 1-800-936-6033.

The regional Alzheimer Resource Centre can connect residents to support groups, including ones that can be accessed by telephone, educational seminars and workshops, and programs that help people live well with dementia.

The Society also provides useful resources for health care professionals.

For more information visit www.alzheimerbc.org.

Just Posted

PHOTO GALLERY: Who’s playing? Lake Cowichan kids love hockey

all of Lake Cowichan’s hockey teams are getting ready for the association’s… Continue reading

Lake Cowichan hockey jamboree ready to take the ice

All six age groups will play games at the Cowichan Lake Sports Arena over the course of the day

Cowichan Lake radio station shuts down for lack of volunteers

The tiny station has fought long and hard to stay alive, but it’s the end of the trail for CICV 97.5

Column Dig In: Add nutrition and flavour with herbs

Boiled tomatoes are pretty bland, but oregano and basil transform them into spaghetti sauce.

4-year-old saddened after thieves vandalize toy car in Duncan

The toddler from Lake Cowichan always looked forward to going to the Duncan Showroom

Solitary-confinement veto a chance to address mental health: advocate

B.C. Supreme Court made the landmark ruling Wednesday

Plan your Hometown Hockey weekend

Find your favourites on the Hometown Hockey schedule

Hometown Hockey: Cowichan Capitals events

On Jan. 20 there will be special features during the game for Hometown Hockey

Winter storm coming to B.C. this weekend

The bets are on as to how much snow the province will actually get in the coming days

B.C. civil rights group files complaint about RCMP arrest of man who later died

Dale Culver, a 35-year-old Indigenous man was arrested in Prince George last July

Lawyer says former B.C. government aide ‘barely guilty’ in ethnic vote scandal

Brian Bonney pleaded guilty to a breach of trust charge

Quite a few tears as homemade quilts distributed to residents of Ashcroft Reserve, Boston Flats affected by last summer’s fire

Quilters in B.C. and Alberta worked through the summer and fall to create more than 100 quilts.

Island Health: No need for alarm in wake of Victoria needle-prick incidents

Three incidents in a week prompts meeting between health authority, city service providers

B.C. coast loggers celebrate history, hope for improvement

Truck Loggers Association awaits B.C. NDP government’s new direction

Most Read