Keremeos support group seeking volunteers

Help is needed for
Keremeos Alzheimers
support group as society deals with increasing incidence of the disease

Members of the Keremeos support group for the Alzheimer Society of B.C. meet every third Wednesday of the month in the Health Centre conference room.  From left to right

Members of the Keremeos support group for the Alzheimer Society of B.C. meet every third Wednesday of the month in the Health Centre conference room. From left to right

 

Tom, Joseph, Irene and Donna meet once a month to talk about how their lives are affected by dementia. They are all caring for family members who are in various stages of the disease.

They, like many Keremeos residents, also all attend a free caregiver support group offered locally by the non-profit Alzheimer Society of B.C.

“This is their lifeline, says Laurie Myres, the Society’s Support and Education Coordinator for Keremeos and the South Okanagan.

“They can meet with people with similar issues who are in a unique position to offer support to others on the same journey. The group is a place that they can talk openly, share information and give each other mutual support.”

An estimated one in 11 B.C. residents over age 65 already live with Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia. And that number is projected to double over the next generation. The resulting need for assistance is soaring, and volunteers help ensure that the demand is met.

“Volunteers are absolutely invaluable to our team,” says Myres. “It’s exceptionally rewarding work, to know that you are making a meaningful difference in someone’s life. Our volunteers tell us they get far more back in return than they give.”

Want to be a support group facilitator? The position has a few requirements:

* Excellent listening and empathetic skills

* Knowledge of dementia or a willingness to learn

* Facilitation skills or a willingness to learn

* Formal or informal caregiving experience an asset

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

For more information and to volunteer, contact Myres at 250-493-8182 or lmyres@alzheimerbc.org.

Residents can get more information on Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias by visiting www.alzheimerbc.org.

Contact: Laurie Myres, Support and Education Coordinator, Alzheimer Society of B.C., 250-493-8182 or lmyres@alzheimerbc.org.