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Published January 30, 2023
Representatives of the University of Wyoming’s Wyoming Center on Aging (WyCOA) and Wyoming Dementia Together addressed hundreds of attendees at the first Wyoming Health and Wellness Fair Jan. 14 at the Ford Wyoming Center in Casper.
Those presenting included Kevin Franke, of WyCOA, and Sabine Schenck and Scott Veatch, of the Wyoming Dementia Together Caregiver Network.
Franke spoke on the challenges of living with a chronic health condition and the resources available in Wyoming to support those affected. He also addressed chronic disease prevention and the best ways to begin a personal journey toward better health.
Schenck introduced the attendees to Wyoming Dementia Together and the services offered during the group’s twice-monthly Zoom calls, while Veatch shared his personal experiences as a caregiver for his wife, who died a year ago after being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2007.
“We have important, life-changing information to share with those caring for a loved one with dementia and for those who’ve been diagnosed with a dementia-related condition,” Veatch says. “We’re always grateful to be able to discuss our personal experiences and offer our professional help.”
Sixty businesses participated in the fair, and attendance was estimated at more than 500.
Wyoming Dementia Together meets by Zoom every other Wednesday at 10:30 a.m. throughout the year. Programs feature a guest speaker and allow time for interactive discussion among those who attend online from throughout Wyoming and the Rocky Mountain region. Previous programs have covered topics including “Being a Care Partner and Advocate,” “Dementia and Driving,” “Taking Vital Signs: The Good, Bad and Basics,” “Building Caregiver Confidence,” “Personal Hygiene and Confidence,” “End of Life Care” and “Honoring Legacy: The Gift of a Lifetime.”
Future program topics include “Communication: Best Practices and Conversation Tips,” Feb. 8; “Behavioral Changes and Our Responses,” Feb. 22; “What Matters Most to Your Loved One -- Conversations,” March 8; and “Caregiver Support Using Technology to Ease the Caregiver Burden,” March 22.
The Wyoming Dementia Together staff -- which includes dementia care professionals, licensed clinical social workers, physical and occupational therapists, and caregivers themselves -- started meeting in fall 2020 and has since been offering online programming help twice each month.
For information about registering for these free online Zoom sessions and the other services offered by Wyoming Dementia Together, call WyCOA at (307) 766-2829 or email email@example.com.