Posted by Beth Soltzberg

A new, one-minute public service announcement (PSA) video in English and Spanish is available from the JF&CS Percolator Memory Café Network. Memory Cafés are welcoming social gatherings for people living with dementia and their family, friends, and caregivers. In Massachusetts, one out of every 8 people age 65 and over lives with dementia. Dementia often causes individuals living with dementia as well as their family and friends to become socially isolated.

The biggest challenge for most Memory Cafés is getting the word out to community members who could benefit from attending, but who have become isolated due to dementia and may hesitate to try something new and unfamiliar. The goal of the PSA video is to spread awareness that Memory Cafés are available and give community members a picture of what Cafés look like to help them feel more comfortable attending for the first time. To keep the video short, only basic information about dementia was included.

Since 2014, the JF&CS Percolator Memory Café Network has helped organizations to start and sustain Memory Cafés by providing technical assistance and a forum for sharing resources and ideas. The Percolator directly serves Massachusetts Cafés, but as the first network of its kind has welcomed participation from other states and countries. A hallmark of Memory Cafés is that they vary in terms of setting, activities, language, and other characteristics, so that they can fit their local community.

This video project and the Percolator's ongoing work to support the spread of Memory Cafés has been made possible through support from the Massachusetts Association of Councils on Aging (MCOA), the Rosalinde Gilbert Innovations in Alzheimer's Caregiving Legacy Award, and generous donors including Rosa Rasiel, the Lebovitz Family Charitable Trust, Nancy Belsky and the Rita J. and Stanley H. Kaplan Family Foundation.