Adult Day Program Helps Senior with Dementia

Eleanor sits on chair learning Ukulele at adult day program
by Linda Leigh
Categories: Articles, Feature, Mobile, Newswire
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Eleanor has early onset dementia and one of the best therapies for her has been The Salvation Army’s adult day program in Hamilton, Ont.

“I’ve seen quite a change in Eleanor since she began the program 18 months ago,” says husband, Jim. “She is more outgoing and engaging to talk with. She attends the program three days a week and can’t get there fast enough.”

The program, which operates five days a week, provides a “day out” for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s and the lonely, who need stimulation and socialization.

“The program brings normalcy, in a controlled way, into their lives,” says Major Karen Feltham, Executive Director. “A sense of connection and family are established here.”

Participants benefit from a hot lunch and a variety of social, intellectual, recreational and physical activities in a safe and structure environment. “We want to keep seniors in their homes as long as we can and have been very successful in doing that,” says Feltham.

For Eleanor, activities such as bingo have helped to maintain her coordination. The knitting club has improved her social interaction and learning to play the Ukulele has helped keep her brain active.

“With my assistance and the program, Eleanor can stay at home longer,” says Jim. “That means a lot.

“The program has made my life easier. I not only feel at ease knowing she is well cared for but, while she is there, I can run errands and finish other tasks.  

“It’s a great program. I don’t know what I’d do without it.”