Three exceptional programs from Wisconsin, Minnesota and California were 2012's recipients of the Rosalinde Gilbert Innovations in Alzheimer's Disease Caregiving Legacy Awards. The programs' organizers were presented with an award of $20,000 each at the 2013 Aging in America conference, an annual event of the American Society on Aging, held this year in Chicago, Illinois.
The awards program, organized and hosted by FCA's National Center on Caregiving (NCC), and sponsored by The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation, marks the fifth year of the Awards that recognize excellence in Alzheimer's care and caregiver support in three categories: Creative Expression; Diverse & Multicultural Communities; and Policy & Advocacy. The awards program was originally announced in the Spring of 2008 and has attracted organizations and programs from all across the United States.
The Center on Age & Community's activities focus on leading in the field of long term care by offering cutting edge educational programs and products, and creating national models of person-centered dementia care. TimeSlips is one such model. TimeSlips opens creative storytelling to people with dementia by replacing the pressure to remember with the freedom to imagine. It inspires others to see beyond loss to recognize their strengths; and improves the quality of life of people with dementia and their caregivers. The program offers training, certification and consulting, and acts as a resource for those dedicated to transforming dementia care through creative engagement. The project also hosts a free, interactive website where caregivers can facilitate storytelling wherever they are—at home or in congregate settings. Approximately 3,000 caregivers have been trained through in-person and online workshops over the past 14 years.
The Amherst H. Wilder Foundation is a nonprofit health and human service organization that assists thousands of people each year through direct service programs, research, leadership and community capacity building. About 19% of caregivers self-identify as such. Most caregivers do not access resources to help them in their role, and as a result do not access supports that could help them in their role. This creates a domino effect of negative health and economic consequences. Wilder's response to this problem was to develop and launch an innovative approach to identifying and engaging caregivers before the crisis. This public awareness campaign has had tremendous impact on creating community awareness of caregivers. Approximately 45,000 caregivers of those with dementia were reached by the year-long campaign.
The Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center operates the only fully integrated Seniors Services program for lesbian, gay, bisexual or transsexual (LGBT) seniors in the Greater Los Angeles area. Alzheimer's disease impacts LGBT seniors at the same rate as their heterosexual peers. As a result, the Center's Seniors Services program developed monthly Alzheimer's (Disease) Caregiver and Bereavement support groups. These are the only support groups specifically for LGBT caregivers and partners living with Alzheimer's disease in the nation. Those who participate in the Caregiver support groups also have access to a system of comprehensive wrap-around care with legal, medical, and mental health services.