Currently more than 55 million people live with dementia worldwide, and nearly 10 million people are diagnosed each year. When most people think of dementia, our minds first go to memory loss. However, unfortunately memory loss is only the tip of the iceberg. Dementia is a group of conditions characterized by impairment of memory loss and judgment, but people can also experience a multitude of symptoms that can impact a range of cognitive and physical functions. To dispel the myths and provide education on dementia and what it is truly like, First Colonial Inn is hosting recurrent Virtual Dementia Tours in their community.
The first virtual experience will be held for the leadership team and associates at First Colonial Inn to provide them with a sense of what life with dementia is like for the residents in their daily care.
“Dementia is a disease that affects our community and impacts the lives of many of our residents every day,” says Jackson Cherry, executive director of First Colonial Inn. “We want to provide the absolute best care for all of our residents, so starting the virtual dementia tours is a great way to educate our community and helps us instill compassion and empathy for those in our care. Especially for those who are living with Dementia or Alzheimer’s.”
For the duration of the virtual dementia tours, First Colonial Inn will be working in collaboration with Second Wind Dreams, an internationally known nonprofit organization that was created to “change the perception of aging by offering educational programs that help caregivers understand the physical and mental challenges facing those with dementia.” The founder of Second Wind Dreams, P.K Belville, also created the acclaimed Virtual Dementia Tour (VDT), a scientifically proven training method that was designed to build awareness and sensitivity in individuals who care for those with dementia.
During the Virtual Dementia Tour, participants will receive a firsthand experience that simulates what daily life with dementia is like. This includes patented sensory tools and instruction that is a scientifically proven method of building a greater understanding of dementia.
“Providing our community with access to the Virtual Dementia Tour is extremely valuable,” says Juleah Best, assistant executive director at First Colonial Inn. “We might take care of our residents every day, but we don’t truly understand what it’s like to be in their shoes. This resource will give us insight into their daily challenges and give us an opportunity to better provide for our residents who have dementia or experience similar symptoms.”
In addition to spreading education and awareness for those with dementia and what they experience, First Colonial Inn would also like to recognize the role and importance of caregivers in their community and offer them a safe haven and support system to lean on.
“Caregivers rise by lifting others, and they deserve the same support in return,” said Cherry, “Many people often feel alone in their fight for their loved one or patient, and we want to ensure that our community provides a space that provides support and compassion for those who are living with this disease.”
For more information on the next Virtual Dementia Tour event, call (757) 777-9121.
For members of the media who are interested in covering this story or arranging an interview, please email Madison Stephens at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 214-378-7970 ext. 221 or contact Sarah Jackson at email@example.com or ext. 304.