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K-State Today

April 2, 2013

Center on Aging presents Personhood and Dementia workshop on April 23

Submitted by Communications and Marketing

A music therapist and an award-winning filmmaker will speak at the Personhood and Dementia workshop on Tuesday, April 23, at the Holiday Inn in Manhattan.

The workshop, presented by Kansas State University's Center on Aging in the College of Human Ecology, targets caregivers and will focus on learning to interact with persons with dementia. It is free and open to the public. The program starts at 9 a.m. and ends at 3 p.m., and includes a break for lunch.

"We are doing this workshop because we have recognized the high demands placed on formal and informal caregivers of persons with dementia," said Gayle Doll, director of the center. "Recent practice has shown the benefits of the arts for persons with cognitive loss. Because medical advances have helped people to live longer, more and more of us will be afflicted with these problems. It is important for us to find solutions that focus on quality of life for this population."

The morning speaker is Dan Cohen, founder and executive director of Music and Memory, a nonprofit organization that promotes the use of digital music technology to improve the lives of the elderly and cognitively impaired. Cohen has a master's in social work.

He will look at the use of music as a therapeutic intervention in caring for individuals with Alzheimer's disease or a related dementia. His work is featured in the documentary "Alive Inside."

The second keynoter is Jim Vanden Bosch, founder and executive director of Terra Nova Films Inc., a not-for-profit company specializing in the production and distribution of documentaries and educational videos. Using video clips, he will compare how Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia are perceived today and how that perception impacts the lives of caregivers and those who have a dementia disability. His presentation is at 1 p.m.

One of the panelists will be Teresa Radebaugh, director of Wichita State University's Regional Institute on Aging and the Carol and Rozina Cassat professor in aging.

Radebaugh, a psychiatric epidemiologist, co-edited a book on Alzheimer's disease written for primary care providers. During her tenure with the National Institutes of Health, she received the Director's Award for her outstanding scientific leadership and superb administrative skills in developing cross-cultural research in Alzheimer's disease in underserved minority populations.

Panelists from Kansas State University will include Rick Scheidt, professor of family studies and human services, and Teri Holmberg, music therapist with the School of Music, Theatre, and Dance. Other panelists will include Cindy Miller with the Alzheimer's Association; Ryan Grace, administrator at Santa Marta, a continuing care retirement community in Kansas City; Amanda Rall, an independent living leader at Meadowlark Hills in Manhattan with expertise in providing care for persons with dementia; and Judy Roth, who has seen how the Music and Memory programs works with individuals with Alzheimer's.

The workshop is partially made possible by the Edna C. Richardson Fund, the Joyce Rawlins Jenkins Excellence Fund in Gerontology and the life span human development unit of Kansas State University's School of Family Studies and Human Services.