According to the Alzheimer Society of B.C., there is an ever-increasing number of people diagnosed with dementia. An estimated 70,000 people are living with Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia in the province.
“A few years back we were told there was roughly 6,000 people affected with some sort of dementia within the Prince George area,” says Laurie De Croos, the First Link Coordinator for the Alzheimer’s Society Resource Centre in Prince George.
In Canada, it’s estimated 564,000 people have some form of dementia. That’s expected to increase 66% over the next 15 years.
On Tuesday, March 7th, the Alzheimer Society of B.C. is holding the “Getting to Know Dementia” workshop from 1:30 to 4 p.m. at the Resource Centre in Prince George. It’s a chance for newly diagnosed patients, their families and caregivers to get connected to the proper supports. “This is just an introduction about what is dementia,” says De Croos. “Where do you get started? How do you seek help? Who do you talk to?”
De Croos hopes to break down barriers. “Dementia holds a stigma that we are trying very hard to rid. Some of the things that–it’s not just the diagnosis—but family members and friends may feel grief, loss, fear, denial and anxiety.”
According to her, education is crucial. “The more we know, the more we can understand what is happening to us, to our families, our friends. It’s about knowing there is help available, where do you get started? That there is still meaningful life.”
The workshop is free. Those interested can register by calling (250) 564-7533.