November is National Caregivers Month. In 2006, Aging and Disability Services collaborated with the Alzheimer’s Association, Washington State Chapter, to develop an annual conference that would focus on the unique challenges that African American caregivers experience, particularly in meeting the needs of their loved ones with Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia. On Saturday, November 9, the 2019 African American Caregivers Forum—Legacy of Love—will take place from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Embassy Suites by Hilton in Tukwila.
Legacy of Love offers participants a unique opportunity to enhance their knowledge and understanding of caregiving for loved ones living with Alzheimer’s or related dementias. Highlights include:
- “Lessons Learned from Caregiving for My Mother” is the keynote presentation by Dr. Maxine Hayes. Dr. Hayes served Washington residents for 25 years, 16 as State Health Officer, advising multiple Washington state governors and secretaries of health on issues ranging from health promotion and chronic disease prevention to emergency response. Concurrently, she was primary caregiver for her mother, Myrtle, who lived with Parkinson’s-related dementia.
- “Caregivers: Loving from the Front Line” is a popular panel presentation by residents who will share their experiences as caregivers, including challenges related to dementia care. This year’s panel features caregivers Sharon Sobers-Outlaw, Marla York, and Charles Williams.
- “Speaking of Dying” is a critically acclaimed film by Trudy James that inspires viewers to talk with family members, friends, health care providers, and others about end-of-life choices. We are honored to have Ms. James join us at the forum. She will join a panel discussion on planning for end-of-life moderated by Brenda Charles-Edwards, chair of the Mayor’s Council on African American Elders, a City of Seattle commission. Panelists include Dr. Jim deMaine, Stephanie Haslam, and George Dicks, who have been popular presenters at previous Legacy of Love conferences.
This culturally focused event draws family caregivers from throughout the Pacific Northwest. For professionals in the field of social work, the National Association of Social Workers offers five continuing education units (5 CEUs).
The conference is free to attend and includes complimentary lunch; however, pre-registration is required. Visit www.surveymonkey.com/r/2019LegacyOfLove to register online or call 206-706-7084 to register by phone.
For the most current conference information, visit agingkingcounty.org/LegacyOfLove.
See also two videos from the 2018 conference (African American Caregivers Forum: Hope, Love, Resiliency | African American Caregivers Forum: Planning & Advocacy).
Contributor Karen Winston is the Aging and Disability Services planner who staffs the Mayor’s Council on African American Elders, coordinates Memory Sunday (involving African American faith communities in dementia awareness) and facilitates planning for the annual African American Caregivers Conference.