The Senior Center of the Chathams partnered with the Library of the Chathams and Bayada Home Health Care on an educational seminar about how to recognize cognitive impairment and forms of dementia. The seminar was attended by 35 community gatekeepers including librarians, tax collectors, and church representatives who frequently interact with older adults.

"It was wonderful to collaborate on this seminar with Karen Brodsky, Director of the Library of the Chathams and Kelvin Rivera and his team at Bayada," said Julie Reich, Executive Director of the Senior Center of the Chathams. She added, "It's important to start a conversation about all forms of cognitive impairment and the needs of older adults as they age so we can help to build a community network of support."

It has been estimated that one of every six women and one of every ten men living past the age of 55 will develop dementia. While the experience is unique to the individual, there can be deterioration of memory, thinking, behavior, and the ability to perform everyday activities. Dementia is the umbrella term for a variety of neurological progressive disorders, and Alzheimer's Disease is the most common. Within the United States, there are 5.8 million people currently living with age-related dementias, and the Alzheimer's Association projects that number to increase to 14 million by 2050. The Association also says that direct costs to the nation of caring for those with dementia will total an estimated $290 billion in 2019.

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The Senior Center of the Chathams serves as a vital go-to resource for older adults and those who care for them. The Center offers a monthly Dementia Caregivers Support group and provides free information about cognitive impairment and area support services. Call the Senior Center for information at 973.635.4565.

The Senior Center of the Chathams is a 29-year-old 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization located at 58 Meyersville Road (lowe level) in Chatham, NJ. Its mission is to encourage the independence and well-being of seniors and their families in the greater Chatham area by connecting them with each other and the community at large. The Center offers a wide range of integrated programs and services that promote successful aging. Hours are Mondays through Fridays, 9:15am-3:00pm. Non-Chatham residents are also welcome. For more information call 973.635.4565 and visit chathamseniorcenter.org.