Growing demand for volunteers in Agassiz Harrison area

Dementia support volunteers can help make life easier for families

  • Jul. 6, 2012 7:00 a.m.

Volunteers are an essential resource, and more are currently needed to help with the Alzheimer Society in Agassiz and Harrison Hot Springs. Volunteers provide a range of free services for families dealing with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, from making phone calls to caregivers to facilitating support groups.

“They are absolutely invaluable to our team and are a big reason why we are able to meet the growing need for support and education for families living with dementia,” says Jillian Armit, the Society’s Support and Education Coordinator for Abbotsford and Chilliwack.

An estimated one in 11 B.C. residents over age 65 already live with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. And that number is projected to double over the next generation.

With the need for assistance soaring, help from volunteers is critical for the non-profit.

The need locally right now is for volunteers who can facilitate local support groups that meet each month.

The groups are based on the philosophy that people with similar issues are in a unique position to offer support to others on the same journey. The objective is to strengthen the coping abilities of caregivers and people with early symptoms of dementia, and reduce the impact of dementia on the community.

The position has a few basic requirements, including excellent listening and empathetic skills, knowledge of dementia or a willingness to learn, facilitation skills or a willingness to learn and formal or informal caregiving.

Training is provided, and a one-year commitment is required.

For more information contact Armit at 604-859-3889 or jarmit@alzheimerbc.org, and visit www.alzheimerbc.org.

 

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