Posts Tagged ‘Cognitive Rehabilitation’

Gail Sonnesso on Delivering Meaningful Activities for Those with Dementia

Alzheimer’s Speaks Radio

with Gail Sonnesso and Becky Watson

Dementia & Meaningful Activities

Thursday, August 31st Radio Host Lori La Bey is lucky to have Gail Sonnesso the founder and Executive Director of GEM Adult Day Services, Inc. with us.  Gail will share with us the blend of her studies in dementia, Rehab, Occupational Therapy and life experiences in therapeutic recreation to design meaningful days for people living with dementia while at the same time supporting their care partners.

In addition, we will have Becky Watson, a Board Certified Music Therapist and the Founder and Owner, Music for Wellness.  Becky has always been passionate about supporting the health and wellness through music and Gail and Becky having been doing some work together to ensure this happens.

Today we will have a fascinating conversation about the gift of compassion, engagement and music with these two extraordinary women.

Contact Info Gail E. Sonnesso,

Phone: 252-480-3354          Email:  gsonnesso@gmail.com

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/TheGemCenter

Contact: Becky Watson, MBA, Owner, Music for Wellness, LLC

(757) 563-3488
Email:  Becky@music4wellness.net

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/MusicForWellness

Twitter: Music4SWell

Dementia Cruise of Compassion & Camaraderie

We are honored by your response to our offering of the Dementia Friendly Symposium and Cruise and we are encouraging people to book their cabins before we are sold out!

For more details on the symposium and cruise go to https://alzheimersspeaks.com/cruise-with-us

Click here for the Symposium Program

Kathy Shoaf the travel agent handling the symposium and cruise can be reached at: 219-608-2002 or email her at Kathy.Shoaf@CruisePlanners.com


Click Below to Download the Tips

I Love This Company!

Arthur’s Residential Care has sponsored and supported the Memory Cafe Concept from the beginning I brought it to the United States.  The minute I suggested they become involved in launching one they jumped with both feet in the water and have never looked back. ACR not only graciously gave us space for meetings, but provided treats and additional facilitators as our one group expanded to three.  They have been so progressive in staff dementia training and creating moments of joy for both their residents and their families; which I must admit brings a smile to my face and a warmth to my heat every time.  I am so blessed to witness their work.  Kudos Arthur’s Residential Care!

Lori La Bey, founder of Alzheimer’s Speaks


Insights from Arthur’s – Here is One of Many Free Tips

Help Define What “Quality” Means to You

Open To All In The U.S.

University of Minnesota PhD candidate Heather Davila describes a survey to get input from people age 55+ family members, and professionals who work in the field of aging services about which aspects of “quality” in aging services matter most.

To take the survey go here: www.tinyurl.com/Qagesurvey

Contact: Heather Davila,

Email:  wood0132@umn.edu

Find a Memory Cafe & Get Resources

Read More to Get Resources

Push Research Forward. Join the A-List

An Important message from our friend Meryl Comer:

Only twice in my twenty plus years as an Alzheimer’s caregiver has a doctor ever asked whether I was doing okay. Yet my husband would have never made the clinic appointment on time if I had not gotten up extra early to bathe, dress, feed, manage his resistance and drive him there. Now here’s a chance to be heard!

Researchers from the Mayo Clinic want to learn what matters most to you when you go to the doctor with your loved one. They need volunteers for an online focus group who are current or former caregivers for a loved one with dementia.

Click here to learn more about this important Mayo Clinic caregiver study asking what matters to you when you go to the doctor with a loved one.

Study participants will be asked to join an online focus group and answer several questions over a week and a half posted by the moderator. Participants can choose to remain anonymous. Their goal is to help healthcare providers better support and communicate with caregivers by learning:

  • How health care providers can best help caregivers provide optimal care to loved ones while maintaining their own health.
  • How involved caregivers want to be their loved ones’ healthcare.
  • What the ideal “care team” looks like.

Please click here for more information about this important Mayo Clinic caregiver study.

Your opinions are critical to improving the experience for all caregivers when they accompany loved ones to doctor’s appointments. Let’s not miss this opportunity to make doctors tune into what matters to us.

Meryl Comer, A-List Team Member & 20-year Alzheimer’s care partner







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jackie_pool_3This was a very interesting post on one of my Linkedin groups

made by Jackie Pool from over int he UK.

I have gotten permission to repost.

Please let us know your thoughts!

Can Cognitive Rehabilitation lead to ‘Rementia’?

I am privileged to be involved with a large Cognitive Rehabilitation study which is funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) to determine if early intervention offers the possibility of helping people with early-stage dementia and their carers to manage the impact of Alzheimer’s disease on their everyday life and reduce or delay the progression of disability.

My role as an Occupational Therapist is to train and supervise the OTs who will be delivering the Cognitive Rehabilitation approaches at 6 sites across the UK over 3 years. Participants in the study will be choosing meaningful goals that they wish to achieve.

I am hoping that the outcomes will provide us with evidence that it is possible to work with people with dementia and the ‘plasticity’ of the brain to educate new brain cell pathways to replace damaged ones. I have certainly seen many instances where people I have worked with have improved in both cognition and function and some years ago, Tom Kitwood (of whose work many of you will know) and I discussed this in the context of ‘rementia’

Of course we cannot second guess the outcomes of our study but I wonder if anyone has got any anecdotal evidence of how focused therapeutic interventions have helped individuals to improve – or to maintain their skills for longer than might have been expected?

Can we in our LinkedIn Dementia Champions group raise the profile of what is possible and share this message?

Check out Jackie’s website

Jackie Pool logo transparent background screen black text

Mark your calendars to listen to Jackie on Alzheimer’s Speaks Radio on

June 4th at 11am EST 10am CST, 8am PST, 4pm London

For additional Resources Check out Alzheimer’s Speaks

Contact me if you want to be included in our resource directory…It’s FREE


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