Memory Cafés and Dementia-Friendly Communities
Compiled by Susan H. McFadden, Ph.D.
University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
Information about developing and operating memory cafés and the broader issue of creating dementia-friendly communities is rapidly proliferating online. All of these links have been checked as of January, 2015. If you have others to recommend, please contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org). Together, we can work to end the stigma and social isolation associated with dementia and move our communities and larger societies toward viewing dementia as a disability that can be accommodated with patience and kindness.
Alzheimer’s Cafés and Cousins http://www.alzheimerscafe.com/public.html.alzheimersatoz.com/Welcome.html
This site compares the evolving models of Alzheimer’s cafés and memory cafés and contains many practical suggestions for starting and running memory cafés.
Dementia Adventure: Wood if we Could http://www.dementiaadventure.co.uk/uploads/Wood%20if%20we%20could%20(1).pdf
This is a guide to taking people living with dementia on outings. More about Dementia Adventure and their work can be found here: http://www.dementiaadventure.co.uk
Memory and Alzheimer’s Cafés in the UK: http://www.memorycafes.org.uk
This site lists the Memory Cafés in various parts of the UK and offers “A Guide to Setting up a Memory Café” -- http://www.memorycafes.org.uk/resources/GUIDE-SETTING-UP-MC.pdf
Rotarians Easing Problems of Dementia: http://www.repod.org.uk
Rotary Clubs in England provided early leadership and support for memory cafés. They published the original guide for setting up a memory café and continue use their website to promote memory cafés and ideas for creating dementia-friendly communities.
Third Age Services, LLC: http://www.thirdageservices.com/MemoryCafe.html
This organization is run by Carole Larkin, a certified Geriatric Care Manager in Dallas, TX. On this page, she lists Memory Cafés in the US and offers a brief “toolkit” for starting one.
Alzheimer’s Society (Great Britain): http://www.alzheimers.org.uk/site/scripts/downloads.php?categoryID=200436
This page gives links to many documents about dementia-friendly communities. The one called “Building Dementia-Friendly Communities: A Priority for Everyone” is based on interviews with people with dementia about what they most wanted from their communities.
Minnesota ACT on Alzheimer’s: http://www.actonalz.org/
This organization has developed a detailed toolkit to help communities assess how dementia capable they are: http://www.actonalz.org/toolkit. ACTonAlz also has a page with many sources of information about dementia-friendly communities: http://www.actonalz.org/dementia-friendly. It includes information about memory cafés.
Checklists for developing dementia-friendly communities: http://www.housinglin.org.uk/_library/Resources/Housing/Support_materials/Viewpoints/Viewpoint25_AtAGlance.pdf
This document deals primarily with environmental design that can help make communities more welcoming and easier to navigate for people with memory loss and confusion.
Falmouth, England: Dementia-friendly initiatives with local businesses: http://www.falmouthmemorycafe.org.uk/P2586_3%20booklet.pdf
Here’s an example of how one community in the Cornwall region in England has enlisted the support of a local Rotary Club to become more dementia-friendly, particularly in terms of how local businesses interact with people with dementia.
The Purple Angel: http://www.purpleangel.org.uk/
The Purple Angel is an international symbol indicating that a business or organization has received training in how best to meet the needs of people with dementia. Here’s a website from the US that calls for greater awareness of the meaning of the Purple Angel: http://www.alzheimersspeaks.com/purple-angel-project. This website also has a section on memory cafés.