BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — This program helps not only the patients but also their caregivers.
Giving them a chance to care for themselves, knowing their loved ones are in good hands. These folks aren’t just working out their arms and legs, they’re exercising their brains. This is the Anchor Community Respite Ministry, a ministry that provides “fellowship and stimulation to people who are living with memory loss.”
Gina McIntyre of Anchor Community Respite said, “One of the care partners told me that she said, ‘I just can’t believe every time my husband comes home from here he’s so happy. His mood is so different and for hours he’s just so happy.’”
The classes are held twice a week at Asbury United Methodist Church on Cahaba Valley Road in the Greystone Area thanks to Anchor Community Respite.
The patients dance, play games, work on puzzles and enjoy a meal during the day.
Researchers at UAB say that enrichment programs like this increase the quality of life for people with dementia.
McIntyre said, “They may not remember what they did but we want them to remember how they felt when they were here.”
A feeling Cobbie Ware’s wife of 56 years knows all too well. She’s been diagnosed with vascular dementia, and socialization is a crucial part of her treatment.
Ware said, “She senses and feels the love, the acceptance, the ‘I’m OK, I belong.’ It offsets the fact that she’s felt like she doesn’t have as much to offer as she used to have.”
The love and acceptance they feel are just part of the magic with many saying they also feel the presence of the Holy Spirit among them. They also pay it forward for others such as doing activities like making Christmas care packages for the military.
The ministry meets on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Asbury United Methodist Church.
For more information, you can visit their website and enroll your loved one by clicking here.