Dementia Friendly Communities

You may be wondering what a Dementia Friendly Community is, this page is here to help explain that and maybe give you some opportunities to help your community become dementia friendly. Let’s start by discussing why we are working on this initiative!

Dementia in Wisconsin

Even as the number of people who will face dementia in their lives increase, the number of people who are the primary source of caregiving is decreasing. In Wisconsin in 2015, it is predicted that there will be a 6.6 people between the ages of 45 and 64 for every one person over the age of 80.

The average age of caregivers is 49, and in 2040, the projected number of people at that age will decrease to 2.7 for every one person over the age of 80. Because the chances of developing a dementia are one in three at age 85, it is anticipated that there will be an increased demand for support for people with dementia and a shortage of family caregivers.

Dementia-friendly initiatives can provide assistance to meet the anticipated needs of individuals with dementia, their caregivers, and communities.

Impact on Caregivers

In 2013, Americans provided 17.7 billion hours of unpaid care to people with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. Providing care for an individual with dementia can place demands on caregiver’s own health and emotional well-being. Although caregivers report some positive feelings, including family togetherness and the satisfaction of helping others, they also report high levels of stress related to providing care, including a strain on finances and family relationships.

Caregivers can also experience depression, sleep disturbances and an impact on their physical health. As a result of the chronic stress, physiological changes can occur, including high levels of stress hormones, reduced immune function, and slow wound healing, resulting in an increased use of health care by caregivers.

Dementia Friendly Communities

A dementia-friendly community is a place where individuals with dementia:

  • +Are able to live good lives.
  • +Have the ability to live as independently as possible.
  • +Continue to be part of their communities.
  • +Are met with understanding.
  • +Are given support where necessary.

According to Innovations in Dementia (2012), individuals with dementia described a dementia-friendly community as one that enabled them to:

  • +Find their way around and be safe
  • +Access local facilities they are used to and where they are known (such as banks, shops, cafes, cinemas, and post offices).
  • +Maintain their social networks so they feel they continue to belong.

Dementia-friendly communities build infrastructure to support and take responsibility for enlarging the beneficial effect of services for individuals with dementia and their caregivers. To accomplish these goals, communities can develop new models of collaborative service delivery and advocacy.

Areas of need to be addressed include:

  • +Public awareness
  • +Promotion of early detection
  • +Creation of environments that calm and support the reduction of anxiety for those with dementia
  • +Crisis capacity for mobile crisis teams
  • +Development of emergency placement facilities
  • +Successful care transition managemtne between settings
  • +Voluntary sheriff registry and wandering programs
  • +Dementia friendly businesses

Enhancing hospitality and positive experiences for customers and employees can be considered good business practices, including respectful and responsive services for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias and their caregivers. A business that is dementia-friendly becomes a stakeholder in the well-being of the community.

As there is a financial cost for a business to have its employees engaged in activities other than their normal work functions, it is critical that dementia-friendly business training be conducted in a manner that consider the business’s schedule, timing and distinct needs. Initial training can raise awareness and is usually implemented in 30 minutes or less, allowing for questions and time to discuss specific issues relevant to an individual business.

Why is it important for businesses to be dementia-friendly?

  • +They may have customers with dementia or customers who are caregivers of individuals with dementia.
  • +They may have employees in the beginning stages of dementia or that are caregivers for individuals with dementia.

A dementia-friendly business is a business that,

  • +Is able to recognize the signs of dementia.
  • +Can communicate effectively with individuals with dementia.
  • +Knows how to locate resources and assistance for themselves and for individuals with dementia.

Trained Dementia Friendly Businesses/Organizations:

Businesses and Organizations that have been trained are able to display the purple angel which is a worldwide symbol for being dementia friendly.

Grant County

  • AnchorBank- Platteville
  • Southwest Health EMS
  • City of Platteville
  • Platteville Public Library
  • Jenor Tower
  • Country Club Townhouses
  • Karrmann Law Office
  • Richard Financial Resources
  • Platteville Police Department
  • Platteville Senior Center
  • Grant County Health Department
  • Jayne’s Family Hair Care
  • Rotary Club of Southwest WI/Platteville
  • Walgreens-Platteville
  • Jayne’s Family Hair Care
  • Grant County Meal Site Coordinators
  • Academy Apartments, Managers, Sinsinawa Mound
  • Sinsinawa Support Staff
  • Park Place*


Green County

  • Green County Health Department
  • Maple Leaf Cheese and Chocolate Haus-New Glarus
  • Woodford State Bank-All Locations
  • Wisconsin Bank and Trust
  • Walgreens of Monroe
  • Behring Senior Center-Monroe
  • Monroe Public Library
  • Morning Optimist Club
  • Union Presbyterian Church-Monroe
  • Monroe United Methodist Church
  • Kiwanis Club of Monroe
  • Brodhead Optimists
  • United Chiropractic-Brodhead
  • Paul Mitchell The School
  • Ekum Title & Abstract

Iowa County

  • Anchor Bank -Dodgeville
  • Barneveld United Church of Christ
  • Berget Jewelers-Mineral Point
  • Bunbury & Associates Realtors
  • Care Wisconsin
  • Country View Veterinary Clinic-Mineral Point
  • Culver’s-Dodgeville
  • Davis Duehr Dean
  • Dodgeville Chamber of Commerce
  • Dodgeville Public Library
  • Dodgeville United Methodist Church
  • Dodgeville Veterinary Service
  • Iowa County Health and Human Services
  • Iowa County Sheriffs Department
  • Mineral Point Police Department
  • Mound City Bank-Mineral Point
  • Piggly Wiggly- Dodgeville
  • Southwest Dental Associates-Dodgeville
  • St. Joseph’s Catholic Church- Dodgeville
  • St. Mary’s/St. Paul’s Catholic Church
  • Walgreens-Dodgeville
  • Worksite Solutions
  • Volunteers Drivers – ADRC


Lafayette County

  • American Family Insurance – Tarry Hauser
  • Avon Locker Plant
  • Benton State Bank
  • Black’s Floor Covering
  • The Coffee Cup
  • Darlington City Office
  • Darlington Police Department (Other Local Agencies Included)
  • First National Bank (Darlington & Gratiot)
  • Heart of Health – Karin Lutes, L.Ac.
  • JACE Boutique
  • John & Deb’s Place
  • Johnson Public Library (Darlington)
  • Kingsley Crossing
  • Lafayette Area EMS Members
  • Lafayette County Health Department
  • Lafayette County Human Services
  • Main Furniture & Home
  • Marilyn’s
  • McCoy Public Library (Shullsburg)
  • Mound City Bank-Belmont
  • Pins & Pieces Quilt Shop
  • Riley Heating & Plumbing
  • Shullsburg Chiropractic
  • Shullsburg Community Bank
  • StudiOlivia Photography
  • Subway (Darlington)
  • The Burg-Shullsburg
  • US Cellular (Darlington)
  • UW Extension Office
  • Whalen Chiropractic
  • Woodford State Bank (South Wayne, Argyle, Blanchardville)
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