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Media Contact:
Laura Blodgett, Media Relations
Saint Joseph Mercy Health System
734-712-4536
blodgetl@trinity-health.org
Title
St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor launches unique Alzheimer’s and memory loss program
Start Date
11/04/2013
Article
St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor launches unique Alzheimer’s and memory loss program
Cafe concept offers monthly gatherings for those with dementia and care partners

Ann Arbor, Mich. – St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor is hosting a unique monthly Alzheimer’s and Memory Loss Café held the second Sunday of every month from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. The program is free and open to the public.

Called Joe's Memory Arts Café, these monthly social gatherings provide a social outlet and stress relief for individuals with memory loss living in their own homes, their care partners, family and friends. The café is a safe, supportive and engaging environment where everyone can interact together and have fun with their loved ones as well as find support and resources.

"Our focus is to relieve the stress and isolation felt by those dealing with this disease, which can cause tremendous burnout on the part of the care partner," said Sandy Schmunk, LBSW, dementia specialist and café coordinator. "Often, for those who are not in a residential care setting, old friendships dwindle, it becomes more difficult to get out for social functions and there are fewer locations that feel comfortable and safe to take a loved one who has early, mid or late stage dementia."

The program will include activities centered on art and music such as interactive musical performances, art therapy, dance movement, and more. Information pertaining to Alzheimer's and dementia will also be provided. Each gathering will include a light meal in a café setting.

Joe's Memory Arts Café will be held on the St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor campus at the Towsley Health Building, lower level, located at 5361 McAuley Drive, in Ypsilanti, Mich.

Registration is not required, but appreciated. For more information or to register, contact café coordinator Sandy Schmunk at 734-649-6806 or schmunsl@trinity-health.org. More information also is available at stjoeshealth.org/huron-woods.

Joe’s Memory Arts Café is funded with grants from the Anna Botsford Bach Fund for Seniors, a fund of the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation, and the J. Ferrantino Charitable Foundation.

Joe's Memory Arts Café is a program being piloted by Huron Woods, St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor's award-winning residential dementia care community. Collaborators include the Great Lakes Chapter of the Alzheimer's Association and Catholic Social Service of Washtenaw County - Older Adult Services.

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About Saint Joseph Mercy Health System
Saint Joseph Mercy Health System (SJMHS) is a health care organization serving six counties in southeast Michigan including Livingston, Macomb, Oakland, St. Clair, Washtenaw and Wayne. It includes 537-bed St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor, 443-bed St. Joseph Mercy Oakland in Pontiac, 304-bed St. Mary Mercy Livonia, 136-bed St. Joseph Mercy Livingston in Howell, 119-bed St. Joseph Mercy Port Huron and 113-bed Chelsea Community Hospital. Combined, the six hospitals are licensed for 1,726 beds, have six outpatient health centers, six urgent care facilities, more than 25 specialty centers; employ more than 14,000 individuals and have a medical staff of nearly 3,200 physicians.

SJMHS is a member of CHE Trinity Health, one of the largest Catholic health care delivery systems in the nation. It serves people and communities in 21 states from coast to coast with 84 hospitals, 95 continuing care facilities and home health and hospice programs that provide nearly 2.4 million visits annually. The organization was formed by the May 2013 consolidation of Trinity Health and Catholic Healthcare East.

For more information on health services offered at Saint Joseph Mercy Health System, please visit www.stjoeshealth.org.

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St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor | 5301 McAuley Drive, Ypsilanti, MI 48197 | 734-712-3456