Here are some happenings from AFA member/associate member organizations across the nation:
Caregiving Youth Director Nominated as 2012 CNN Hero
Congratulations to Connie Siskowski, RN, Ph.D., director of the Caregiving Youth Project (CYP), a program of the American Association of Caregiving Youth, Boca Raton, FL on her nomination as a 2012 CNN Hero, a year-long initiative that honors everyday people who are changing the world.
CYP, the first program of its kind in the nation, provides direct services to children who care for ill, disabled or elderly family members, including skills building classes and support groups in school, recreational outings, and connecting families with resources.
As a former child caregiver herself, Siskowski has a special understanding of the unique challenges these young people face. Click here to view her story.
New York State’s First Memory Arts Café Opens in Brooklyn
New York Memory Center and the Alzheimer’s Poetry Project, both Brooklyn-based organizations, in June unveiled a new Memory Arts Café that offers free arts events for people living with Alzheimer’s disease, their caregivers and the general public.
Building on the Alzheimer’s Café movement in Europe that started in 1997, the Memory Arts Café places the creativity of people navigating cognitive impairment at the project’s core. The goal is to provide education, empowerment and energy—offering residents a place for personal enrichment.
The free series takes place on the second Wednesday of each month, and includes light refreshments and the opportunity to chat with the guest artists. It is funded in part by a grant from AFA.
AFA Members Receive MetLife Foundation’s Creativity and Aging in America Leadership Award
The MetLife Foundation in March awarded its Creativity and Aging in America Leadership Award to two AFA members out of three state-of-the-art programs recognized in each health and wellness, lifelong learning and community engagement.
The AFA member recipients are:
Alzheimer’s Poetry Project, Brooklyn, NY, for “Community Engagement”--Founded in 2004 by poet Gary Glazner, the mission of the Alzheimer’s Poetry Project (APP) is to facilitate the creativity of people living with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. APP offers on-line training for artists, family members, healthcare workers and teachers, and works to serve people from various cultural backgrounds. The organization has provided programming to more than 10,000 people with Alzheimer’s disease in 22 states, Germany and Poland.
Songwriting Works Educational Foundation, Port Townsend, WA, for “Health and Wellness”--Founded by Judith-Kate Friedman, Songwriting Works programs give elders and their loved ones full access to the proven health benefits—and the unique empowering artistic experience—of collectively composing and performing original music. Professional musicians with exemplary teaching skills facilitate SW’s Signature Songwriting workshops and Community MusicTeams, where participants compose songs and then perform together.