LiveWell leads awareness initiative

The town of Southington is leading the way in the state of Connecticut in the nationwide initiative, “Dementia Friendly America.” In partnership with LiveWell, formerly the Alzheimer’s Resource Center, “Dementia Free Southington” is charting the maps for other Connecticut municipalities as it recruits members, spreads awareness, and makes the town a safer place for people living with dementia.

In September 2015, the White House Conference on Aging announced the Dementia Friendly America initiative. That spurred individual states to take on the initiative, including Dementia Free Connecticut. With an action team of about 300 dementia friends in Southington, the local branch of the program is moving quickly.

“This community is so receptive to helping their neighbors,” said Katy Bannister, director of community development at LiveWell. “Because of that, we are poised in this town to be the first Dementia Friendly community in Connecticut.”

Dementia Friendly Southington is made possible through educational sessions that touch on details about the disease, what it may look like, and how to help. It teaches community members how to be receptive, understanding and available for their neighbors, friends and family members living with dementia.