The City of Highland Park Dementia Friendly Initiative aims to provide community-wide education, awareness and mindfulness around dementia. In addition, this allows individuals impacted by the disease to continue their engagement in community life, independence and adds to their quality-of-life. Through this initiative, the City of Highland Park’s goal is to decrease stigma and reduce isolation by creating a more welcoming and inclusive environment and by providing support for those navigating this complex journey. Through its Dementia Friendly Program, the city works to connect across sectors, to identify dementia-friendly practices and to build a dementia friendly community by raising awareness, providing education and encouraging community engagement. This initiative is supported by the City of Highland Park, Highland Park Library and Sunrise Senior Living in Highland Park.
Dementia Friendly Highland Park Activities
As a committee, we have identified and are moving forward on the execution of the following initiatives:
Purple Table Reservation: This involves working with local restaurants interested in adopting the Purple Table Program. This entails for the restaurant to offer a purple table reservation (additional accommodation), which one can request and entails staff that has been trained to the needs and sensitivity of one suffering from Dementia. This includes (lighting, quiet space, dementia oriented trained staff)
Resource Packets: Creating a massive resource packet that contains all and any pertinent Dementia/Age Friendly services. We will be collecting info-if you have caregiver support group info, memory café’s, social events/outings, programming, in/out of home caregiving, neuropsych testing/assessment info, etc. please email to me and or Jen Aiello- we will be sorting all info to create a resource packets that can be distributed throughout the city (FD/PD, Library, Park District, etc.).
Public Education /Trainings: We discussed training for First Responder & Community Sector Training as well as offering programming specific to caregivers and family. Public Education: The city has been promoting dementia friendly information via an electronic newsletter, Council meeting reports, web site, social media and hard-copy newsletter. The city has also begun promoting the Dementia Friend training available on the Dementia Friends USA web site and to date; every department within the city has numerous representatives who have completed the training. The educational information will be promoted community-wide in the coming months.
Community Awareness Evening: An evening where Susan Frick can come in and speak on Dementia and play a documentary that has received some very profound positive feedback.
Contact Dementia Friendly Highland Park
Cynthia Plazas, Ph.D
Police Social Services Worker
Highland Park Police Department
Jen Aiello, M.S., LPC
Social Services Coordinator
Highland Park Senior Center