Dear Memory Café Catalyst members and visitors,
Let me start by saying that my heart goes out to all of you at this deeply challenging time. The population we serve, and many other older friends and loved ones in our lives are suffering disproportionately right now, both because they are more vulnerable, and because of the fear and uncertainty that this vulnerability creates.
Many of you are finding creative ways to connect with your people, online, by phone—thankfully, the movement lives on! I bet there are some creative solutions happening and I would love to hear about them below in the comments if you are moved to share.
I am writing today to let you know that I am in transition to a new career in the field of nutrition. My dedication to people living with dementia continues in this new chapter as I try to educate myself on how diet and lifestyle impact dementia risk and progression. After completing a master’s degree in nutrition and becoming a certified functional medicine practitioner, my plan is to work one-on-one with people at high risk, as well as those in early stages of the journey, to make beneficial change.
This Memory Café Catalyst website began as a part of my master’s in gerontology thesis, with the purpose of illuminated the importance of memory cafés and connecting those interested in facilitating them. Over the past six years, my work with the Memory Care Life café program in the San Francisco Bay Area has been my primary focus, but I have kept the Café Catalyst website online because, on a regular basis, I had visitors to the website from all over the country and the world—a testament to the incredible growth of the café movement, and the desire to connect with others on how best to facilitate these cafés.
This field is full of dedicated people with big hearts trying to make a difference and I have been lucky to get to know so many of you over the years. Dave Wiederrich is one such café advocate: he has taken on the significant challenge of keeping an up-to-date listing of our national (and some international) cafés, which as you may know, is published on the Memory Café Directory website. This is a big job and such a needed service! Did you know though, that he has begun to expand the content on his website to include information on virtual cafés as well as other needed dementia carer resources?
And now, Dave has generously offered to transition the content on the Memory Café Catalyst website to the Memory Café Directory and he plans to expand on it going forward. Thank you so much, Dave, for growing these resources for people involved in the café movement!
The Memory Café Catalyst website will remain online through the end of May, at which time, the basic content will be fully transitioned to the Memory Café Directory (read more about the transition here).
During our transition, I encourage you to visit the Memory Café Directory and consider joining Dave’s monthly newsletter so you can keep up with valuable info regarding virtual and, eventually, in-person cafés starting up again (what a wonderful thought, right?).
Thank you so much for your continued interest and support —memory cafés are such a critical piece of our community continuum of care and, quite simply, they bring joy to care couples!
Wishing you all strength and inspiration as we move through the changes ahead.