Free Dementia Care Workshops Help Families Cope

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Caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia doesn’t usually come with a training manual. Most family members just kind of learn as they go and hope for the best.

But what do you do when your husband of 54 years starts refusing to shower? Or your once kind and gentle mother lashes out in anger at you for seemingly no valid reason? The characteristics of dementia vary and can change over time, but they often leave families frightened and ill-equipped to provide quality in-home care for their loved one.

According to the Alzheimer Society of Canada, 1 in 11 Canadians over the age of 65 has Alzheimer’s disease or a related dementia. Many of those affected Canadians are cared for at home by family members.

That’s why Home Instead Inc., franchisor of the Home Instead Senior Care network and the world’s largest provider of nonmedical in-home care services for seniors, has developed free dementia care training workshops to better equip families grappling with the frustration and confusion that often accompanies caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease or other form of dementia,

The workshops, available to the public at no charge, are part of the Home Instead Senior Care network’s Alzheimer’s Disease or Other Dementias CARE: Changing Aging Through Research and EducationSM Training Program. Using the same curriculum used to train professional Home Instead CAREGiversSM, the workshops teach family caregivers practical care techniques and concepts based on ideas endorsed by many Alzheimer’s experts.

“This training program addresses an important and growing need for older people and their families. Using principles of adult learning to instruct caregivers and incorporating state-of-the-art research on behavioral approaches, this program promises to raise the level of expertise in dementia care for a large group of caregivers,” said Jane Potter, M.D., from the Home Instead Center for Successful Aging. “The behavioral issues addressed by this program are among the most challenging for families. Caregivers who complete this training will be able to demonstrate, and teach how best to provide care for persons with dementia and also improve the quality of life for those individuals through sensitive and empathetic care.”


Workshops cover the following topics, though each may vary slightly by location:

  • Alzheimer’s Disease & Other Dementias – The Basics
    Learn about the causes, symptoms and behaviors associated with the disease.
  • Capturing Life’s Journey – How to use Memories to Improve Alzheimer’s Care
    Learn how to make the most of the memories that a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease or other form of dementia has retained.
  • Techniques to Handle Challenging Behaviors
    Learn how to safely and effectively manage the difficult behaviors symptomatic of the disease.
  • Activities to Encourage Engagement
    Become familiar with activities that are suitable for helping a loved one with dementia stay active and engaged in life.

The workshops are available through local Home Instead Senior Care offices and family caregivers can register to attend online at

Additional resources are available to family caregivers at, including information about Alzheimer’s and dementia in-home care services provided by local Home Instead Senior Care offices.