October 3, 2014

Sunnyside Launches Unique Program For Younger Adults With Dementia

Waterloo Region – Sunnyside Seniors’ Services is launching an innovative new program this week for individuals with early or young onset dementia. These types of dementia affect people before the age of 65, sometimes in their 30s 40s or 50s.

“I’m thrilled that Sunnyside is launching this innovative new program,” said Jennifer Gillies, Executive Director of the Alzheimer Society Waterloo Wellington. “There are very few programs in Ontario or Canada geared towards younger people with dementia.”

People living with early onset dementia have unique needs because they often have dependent children or aging parents whom they care for. They may be in the workforce at the time of diagnosis or face financial pressure from not being able to work.

The program will offer physical, intellectual and social stimulation to adults with early onset dementia. It will run Wednesday afternoons from October to March 31, 2015. Participants will have input in designing the program based on their interests, life experiences and needs.

“We wanted to start this program because we recognized that persons living with early onset dementias are underserved in the community,” said Helen Eby, Director of Seniors’ Services at the Region of Waterloo. “This pilot program recognizes that this population needs to be supported appropriately to help them to continue to live meaningful, purposeful lives.”

The Region of Waterloo also runs a Community Alzheimer’s Programs in Cambridge and Kitchener, with programming aimed at older adults living with dementias.

Media inquiries, please contact:
Julie Wheeler, Manager, Community Programs, Sunnyside Seniors’ Services.
519-575-4400 extension 6370

If you are interested in learning more about the program, please contact:
Kelly Sproule, Family Support Coordinator, Sunnyside Seniors’ Services.
519-893-8494 extension 6307