Triggering memories

New center at library employs kits to help inspire memories

Douglas County Library Director Dawn Dailey demonstrates the magnification abilities of the recently-donated Topaz Video Magnifier. (Ari Leuthner / Echo Press)

Douglas County Library Director Dawn Dailey demonstrates the magnification abilities of the recently-donated Topaz Video Magnifier. (Ari Leuthner / Echo Press)

Douglas County Library was in the process last week of setting up a Memory Loss Resource Center. (Ari Leuthner / Echo Press)

Douglas County Library was in the process last week of setting up a Memory Loss Resource Center. (Ari Leuthner / Echo Press)

A memory kit that contains objects related to horses is one of several hoped to spark memories in people with dementia. (Ari Leuthner / Echo Press)

A memory kit that contains objects related to horses is one of several hoped to spark memories in people with dementia. (Ari Leuthner / Echo Press)

A brand new center specifically designed to help Alzheimer's and dementia patients is being unveiled next week at the Douglas County Library.

The "Memory Loss Resource Center" is the inspiration of the library's director, Dawn Dailey, who came up with the idea after attending a Minnesota Library Association conference a few years back.

"They started these dementia kits on a grand scale, going into such places as nursing homes. They would have music and books so everyone could participate," Dailey said. "I brought it back to the library, and I downsized it to make it more personable, more one-on-one."

She has configured two kits to help both caregivers and those suffering with memory loss.

The caregiver kits are separated by their blue packaging, and are designated to help educate and inspire activities that will get a loved one to feel comfortable in a conversation. They are a place to begin for someone who is not sure how to connect with a loved one, Dailey said.

The kits contain an informational book for caregivers, a puzzle or game card, and a music CD, along with flashcards with pictures and questions that are open ended. She hopes this will serve as a start to spark conversation.

"It's the little things that get them talking," she said.

The memory maker kits are yellow and designed for those who might be struggling with their memory. They contain small items specifically put together to help trigger memories. Topics include farming, birds, fishing, hunting and military. 

For full article, go to: Echo Press

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