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VPAS, Waynesboro Public Library to host open house for adults with dementia, care partners

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As part of a growing movement to enhance quality of life for loved ones living with dementia, Valley Program for Aging Services (VPAS) and Waynesboro Public Library (WPL) will co-host a Memory Partners Open House.

Older adults living with dementia and their care partners are invited on Thursday, May 9, 2024, from 10 to 11:30 a.m. at Waynesboro Public Library to participate in stimulating activities for individuals living with dementia as well as an opportunity to for care partners to meet, share ideas, and network. Programming will feature socialization, games, Tai Chi, refreshments, live music, raffles and book displays.

As our population ages, the incidence of dementia is expected to more than double in the United States by 2050. As the disease progresses, caregivers strive to help their loved ones navigate their home environments, but it can become challenging to interact successfully with others in public.

Memory Partners is designed to not only create joyful and stimulating outings for those living with dementia, but also a comfortable environment for interaction with care partners and other attendees on a similar journey.

WPL and VPAS staff members are specially-trained to create safe, welcoming spaces for participants and lead programming that builds a sense of fulfillment and confidence for all.

“Memory Partners is a vital community resource, offering a haven where people can share experiences, laughter, and companionship,
fostering connections that enrich lives and strengthen communities,” WPL Outreach and Engagement Coordinator Rachel McDowell said.

Registration for the open house is not required and the event is free of charge. Parking is available at the library. For easiest access, park in the lower lot and use the back entrance accessible only for the program. To learn more, call Heather Lawrence at 540-615-5341.

“Memory Partners is a special gathering place for dementia care partners to reminisce, share their thoughts, try different activities, enjoy music, or just appreciate a break from their normal routine. Once attendees experience the warm welcome from the library
and feel safe, it becomes this wonderfully nurturing atmosphere for everyone,” Lawrence, VPAS caregiver support coordinator, said.

VPAS empowers adults 60 years and older with resources and opportunities to live engaged lives. With information and referral services, Medicare counseling, senior transportation, recreational and health programming, meal delivery, and caregiver support available throughout five counties in the Shenandoah Valley, VPAS has been serving older adults and their families for 50 years.

WPL has been dedicated to fostering connections among individuals, offering a rich array of information, resources, entertainment, and opportunities for interaction since its founding in 1912. The commitment has made WPL a hub for exploration, growth and learning. Providing access to a diverse range of materials including books, DVDs, audiobooks, eResources, and databases, alongside a local history collection, public access computers, WI-FI, and versatile meeting spaces, WPL stands as a cornerstone of the community.

Rebecca Barnabi

Rebecca Barnabi

Rebecca J. Barnabi is the national editor of Augusta Free Press. A graduate of the University of Mary Washington, she began her journalism career at The Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star. In 2013, she was awarded first place for feature writing in the Maryland, Delaware, District of Columbia Awards Program, and was honored by the Virginia School Boards Association’s 2019 Media Honor Roll Program for her coverage of Waynesboro Schools. Her background in newspapers includes writing about features, local government, education and the arts.