The Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) is hosting a monthly Memory Café at Riveredge Nature Center on the first Thursday of each month from 2:30-4:00 p.m. Since spring 2020, with Covid-19 concerns being paramount, we’ve been meeting digitally. See our Event Calendar for dates and details.  Memory Cafes are an exciting opportunity for those that are living with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), early stage Alzheimer’s or other dementia to be social and learn new things in a warm and accepting atmosphere. Individuals are invited to come and bring their spouse, adult child, sibling or friend who supports them with these issues. Since Riveredge is located on the border of Washington and Ozaukee Counties, individuals in those and other neighboring counties are encouraged to attend.

The people that attend Memory Café continue to be an eclectic group that appreciates meeting others that may be having similar experiences and just being able to relax and enjoy being together. The daughter of a participant captured her mom’s thoughts by saying “’Memory Café is the best…it gives me my imagination back for 1-1/2 hours a month. I’m so very thankful for that!’ Another participant mentioned that “it’s the camaraderie of everyone working together for a common goal.”

Changes in memory, problem solving and communication are a growing concern for many. According to the Alzheimer’s Association 2014 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures Report, “1 in 9 Americans aged 65 and older has Alzheimer’s and 1 in 3 people aged 85 and older has the disease”. The prevalence of people with Alzheimer’s disease in Washington County is 2,750 with a projected 72% increase by 2030 and 1,997 in Ozaukee County with a projected 55% increase by 2030. The vast majority are living at home, many on their own. “Until our society opens their hearts – and doors – and accepts cognitive impairment and dementia as part of the lives of many of us; we need places like Memory Cafes that people with Mild Cognitive Impairment and early dementia can go to socialize, relax and function in settings that feel familiar and “normal.”, adds Vicki Conte, Program Manager, Department of Neurology at Froedtert & The Medical College of Wisconsin.

The ADRC of Washington County, Caregiver Coalition of Ozaukee County and the Alzheimer’s Association are also affiliated with and support this gathering. These groups are additional sources of support and assistance to those coping with the issues of memory loss and cognitive changes.

“We started the first café in Ozaukee County in April of 2014, and it has been such a success that we were inspired to develop a second site. Riveredge Nature Center offers a beautiful and peaceful setting and we are really excited to have the chance to collaborate with them on this new venture” – Michelle Pike, Director of the ADRC of Ozaukee County.

“Research is telling us that the most proactive and positive things that people can do to address memory loss and cognitive changes are to be socially engaged and physically active. We are thrilled that a resource like Riveredge exists and offers the opportunity to be socially, physically and creatively active in a setting people would naturally frequent,” – Kathy Glaser, Dementia Care Specialist at the ADRC of Ozaukee County.

“We are proud to be affiliated with the Riveredge Memory Cafe.  Persons with memory issues often become very isolated as they begin to struggle more and more in social situations.  Having a place where persons with memory issues can socialize and create new friendships with others experiencing some of the same changes with their cognitive abilities is so important for these persons and their family members.   We commend the staff at Riveredge and the Aging and Disability Resource Center for creating this much needed opportunity in our community,” – Ginny Nyhuis, Regional Services Manager for the Southeastern Wisconsin Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association.

There is no charge to attend but registration is encouraged.

In partnership with the Ozaukee County Aging Resource Disability Center (ARCC), Riveredge is offering a Memory Café.

Since spring and Covid-19 concerns, Memory Cafe meets virtually on the first Thursday of every month. The café is intended for people with all stages of memory loss and their caregivers. Fun indoor and outdoor (weather dependent) activities are planned for the group each month. The Café offers the opportunity for people to be socially, physically and creatively active in a natural setting whenever possible. The group provides additional sources of support and assistance to those coping with the issue of memory loss and cognitive changes. Call Sarah Prohuska at ARDC to register (262)993-7352.