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HOGEWAY DEMENTIA VILLAGE VIA UTWNOW (Original article below)


IF INTERESTED IN SUPPORTING THIS TYPE OF COMMUNITY
IN THE UNITED STATES, PLEASE CONTACT:
Alz-Caregiver 



(This morning *Happy Summer* I saw this photo and link, as a share on Facebook, by Un_uck The World. Below the article originally published in august of 2013, I share my insight and thoughts about villages similar to this being built in the United States.)

             HOGEWAY DEMENTIA VILLAGE | THE FUTURE OF DEMENTIA CARE?

"Hogewey, located in the Netherlands, is the only care facility of it’s kind in the world and is home to over 150 people with severe dementia. Started by 2 nurses who feared having to put their own parents in a traditional nursing home, ‘Dementia Village’ is a place where residents live a seemingly normal life, but are actually being watched by caregivers at all times. There are almost twice as many caregivers as residents in the village and they staff everything from the grocery store to the hair salon.

There is only one way out of the alternate reality of Dementia Village – a door that is locked and under 24 hr surveillance – an important safety measure for wandering residents. If a resident of Hogewey approaches the door a caretaker will suggest that this door is locked and perhaps they could look for a different door.

Residents are free to roam around, visiting shops, getting their hair done or being active in one of the 25 clubs available at Hogewey. As well as the psychological benefits this provides, staying active also improves general physical health. The residents here take fewer medications, eat better and live longer. And although joy is a hard thing to measure, the staff at Hogewey think their residents are more content on a day to day to basis."

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MY THOUGHTS ON THE AMAZING HOGEWAY VILLAGE AND
WHY IT IS SO NEEDED IN THE UNITED STATES.
by Shawni Groves
June 21, 2014

After my grandmother died in 1998, I went back to school for about 6 months and took classes in the Gerontology Studies Program at CSUF. At that time I was seriously considering a career as an elder law attorney, but that changed after the extreme frustration of not being able to keep up with the very distracting and constant revisions of Medicare A and B, articles/amendments - I think at that time it was every 15 minutes, for real. Thankfully, a big part of what was offered in the overall program was Alzheimer's (Disease) Care, and I toured many facilities as the curriculum required we write assessments on each. 

I had very mixed emotions when seeing what those who had mid to end stage AD and their caregivers, a lot of family members, went through on a daily basis. On the one hand I was so happy that these amazing men and women, who were at one time community leaders, Fortune 500 CEO's, teachers, etc. were so lovingly cared for and able to slowly adapt to the extremely confusing, horrific and still incurable (not untreatable) disease known as Alzheimer's. I especially felt a sense of relief for the family members, but at the same time had such sorrow for them when seeing how they were deeply affected by the gradual loss of their loved one(s) who would momentarily have bursts of clarity and could share their love, fear and acceptance of how they were feeling, before going back in their memory, without warning or wanting, to another place in time unable to function or remember who they were just talking to.

I interned for about 9 months after finishing up the CSUF program, with a woman who founded one of the first gerontology training centers in California. A place where families could go to be directed to locate care facilities, and other services, and where LVN'S and CNA's could become re-certified, or be guided to programs of higher study. From there I worked at what is still considered state of the art Acacia Adult Day Services, where most of the clients who had AD could go on a daily or weekly basis for social interaction which helped them keep some of their independence intact. I loved working with that population. 

I know if health care advocacy groups, and architectural firms in the U.S. started to study this program in the Netherlands, and built a similar model here, that it would take off completely. According to the definition of Baby Boomer on Wikipedia, "seventy-six million American children were born between 1945 and 1964". To put that number in perspective, the current population of California is just under 40 million, and the state of New York is just under 20 million.

In 1998 those who were on the forefront of gerontological care were very concerned about how to care for the aging baby boomer generation, and what would happen in the 10-20-30 years to those developing AD or Dementia. A village such as the one in Hogeway could definitely be a wonderful, solid solution. 


With all of my heart, I truly hope villages similar to Hogeway start to be built throughout the world. I hope if you are living in the U.S. and reading this, and feel the same way, that you will contact the following organizations, let them know and ask them how to get started:

alzCAREGIVER: http://alz-caregiver.com
National Council on Aging: http://www.ncoa.org
Alzheimer's Weekly: http://www.alzheimersweekly.com
Eldercare Locator:http://www.eldercare.gov
Administration on Aging: http://www.aoa.gov/
 

What incredible places they would be for those living with the equal opportunity/non-discriminatory Alzheimer's Disease and/or, Dementia and their caregivers. 

Peace,
Shawni Groves

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