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CAREGIVING CHRONICLES

Information and resources that support your role in caring for a loved one.

Memory cafes are a unique resource for caregivers and the loved ones they are caring for who have Alzheimer`s or another form of dementia. Fortunately, they are also becoming available in more places, especially for caregivers in MetroWest.

There are now five memory cafes in the area, with cafes in Marlborough, Sudbury, Franklin, Shrewsbury and Worcester offering a variety of different days and times for caregivers to take advantage of their offerings.

These cafes offer an opportunity for people caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s or another dementia a chance to get some needed relief while still spending time with your loved one and other caregivers in a relaxed and welcoming setting. The cafes encourage socialization with other caregivers and loved ones where you can just be yourself. It provides an opportunity to get out with your loved one and have an enjoyable morning or afternoon.

Unlike support groups that are strictly for caregivers or adult day programs just for the care recipient, memory cafes offer a chance for the caregiver and care recipient to get needed respite and socialization while remaining together.

Pleasantries Adult Day and Consulting Services in Marlborough opened the first memory cafe in the region, and its Create A Better Day Cafe continues to meet on the fourth Sunday of each month from 1-3 p.m. at Pleasantries (195 Reservoir Street, Marlborough, MA; call 508-481-0809 or email tammy@pleasantriesads.com for more information).

Pleasantries owner and director Tammy Pozerycki, MA, CADDCT, CDP, describes the Cafe as “a time to step out of the daily routine, leave the disease at the door, and enjoy a positive experience in a supportive environment. The afternoon will consist of entertainment, conversation, music, arts, games, refreshments, and most importantly, laughter.”

Pozerycki, along with Anne Manning, also helps run the Comfort Food Caring Cafe in Sudbury, which recently changed its meeting time to the fourth Monday of each month from 12-2 p.m. at the Sudbury Senior Center (40 Fairbank Road, Sudbury, MA). Call Manning at 978-443-3055 to RSVP.

The Franklin Senior Center (10 Daniel McCahill Street, Franklin, MA) also offers a memory cafe on the third Thursday of each month from 3-5 p.m. Contact Respite Supervisor Elaine Owens at 508-520-4945 for more information.

In addition to those options, the Good Day Memory Cafe meets on the first and third Fridays of each month from 2-4 p.m. at the Shrewsbury Public Library (609 Main Street, Shrewsbury, MA). No registration is needed for that cafe. Caregivers and their care recipients can just drop in to socialize and have an enjoyable afternoon with music, games and other fun activities.

Lastly, the Worcester Memory Cafe meets on the third Tuesday of each month from 2-3:30 p.m. at the Worcester Senior Center (128 Providence Street, Worcester, MA).

The cafe is a monthly gathering of individuals with memory loss along with their caregivers and/or friends and family in a safe, supportive and engaging environment. The cafe is open to anyone in the community, at any stage of the disease process. It is a time to socialize, enjoy each other’s company and have a good time. The goal is to make every guest feel as comfortable as possible, but it is not a support group or drop-off respite option. Any guest who requires a personal care attendant must have a caregiver present.

RSVPs are appreciated but not required. Please contact Deb Dowd-Foley at Elder Services of Worcester Area at 508-756-1545 or ddfoley@eswa.org.

For a complete listing of the memory cafes serving MetroWest caregivers and their loved ones, check out our Memory Cafes page.

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