Posted by Nancy Mazonson
In partnership with Tufts University Boston School of Occupational Therapy, JF&CS Parkinson's Family Support program has hosted a summer men's group for several years. Last year's masters level OT student, Sarah Porter, wrote a wonderful article about the group which was just published in a national OT journal.
Parkinson's disease often causes social isolation, and Sarah captured the essence of the program in her article in which she described the group's goal as providing opportunities for men to connect with each other and share food and conversation while agreeing to "leave their Parkinson's at the door." Rather than highlighting management of symptoms and disease challenges, the men's group focused its attention on the participants themselves apart from their disease: who they are in the community and the life roles in which they participate.
As is the case with all of the Parkinson's Family Support programming, the men's group was designed to improve quality of life and the enthusiastic participants felt the group achieved that goal.
Nancy Mazonson has coordinated JF&CS Parkinson's Family Support program since its inception in September 2006. The program is a leading resource in the Boston area with its unique programs, including Parkinson's Dance, Adult Child and Care Partner support groups, and Tremble Clefs choral singing group. Prior to her work at JF&CS, Nancy worked extensively in inpatient and community-based rehabilitation settings, specializing in helping people with degenerative neurological conditions.