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African American Caregiver Forum Focuses on Dementia Care

Portrait of an elderly mother and adult son kiss on cheek

Did you know that African American caregivers—who are, on average, 47.7 years old—provide care for an average of 5.2 years? Did you know that, on average, they also work 37.5 hours per week?

Do you suppose they experience any stress during this time? That’s a rhetorical question, because of course they do. Does it help relieve stress to know that resources are available for the loved ones they care for but also for themselves, as caregivers? That’s a resounding “yes!”

The annual Legacy of Love African American Caregivers Forum was first presented in November 2017 as part of National Family Caregivers Month. Participants heard presentations on Alzheimer’s disease research, brain health, diagnoses, and legal and financial planning. Based on that success, the forum has been presented every year since, including three years that it was presented online due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

A PDF that advertises the 2023 Legacy of Love event.

Click on the image above to open the PDF flyer.

We are back in person in 2023, with a wonderful program framed around a keynote presentation by Dr. Ethlyn McQueen Gibson, whose National Institute of Health funded clinical research has focused on African Americans experiencing Alzheimer’s or other dementias. In addition. Dr. Gibson has been a caregiver for her mother.

In addition, a panel of local caregivers will talk about their personal caregiving journeys, including both the challenges and joys of caring for loved ones.

“This conference is an opportunity for caregivers to feel empowered in providing care—even dementia care—for a family member or close friend,” said Mary Mitchell, director of Aging and Disability Services in the Seattle Human Services Department. “This work is vitally important, and it isn’t easy. Fortunately, there are services and supports we can provide that will help caregivers maintain their own quality of life as they meet the demands of work and family.”

The 2023 Legacy of Love African American Caregivers Forum will take place on Saturday, November 4 (10 a.m.–2 p.m.) at the Northwest African American Museum (2300 S Massachusetts St, in Seattle). Professionals and family caregivers are encouraged to attend this half-day event, free of charge. Advance registration is required. Visit for more information.

Event co-sponsors include AARP Washington, African American Elders Program at Catholic Community Services, Age Friendly Seattle, Aging and Disability Services, Seattle Human Services Department, Mayor’s Council on African American Elders, National Association of Social Workers, and Sound Generations.

Karen WinstonContributor Karen Winston is a senior planner at Aging and Disability Services, the Area Agency on Aging for King County, and a division of Seattle Human Services. Karen’s portfolio includes the Mayor’s Council on African American Elders and coordination of Memory Sunday (June), Grandparents Day (September), and the African American Caregivers Forum (November).For more information, e-mail