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Carefor and Carleton University launch Ottawa’s first Young Onset Dementia program

Carefor and Carleton University launch Ottawa’s first Young Onset Dementia program


CEO Steve Perry participating in the ribbon-cutting ceremony.

Carefor Health & Community Services was proud to officially launch “The Club” on January 21, 2020 at Carleton University. “The Club” is an Adult Day Program for individuals living with Young Onset Dementia that was created in partnership with Carleton University. Every Tuesday, The Club’s 10 participants, all of whom are living with Young Onset Dementia, meet at Carleton Athletics to participate in a variety of activities including swimming, badminton, aerobics and running.

The launch event highlighted this first of its kind program in Eastern Ontario. Steve Perry, Carefor’s CEO, and Jennifer Brenning, Carleton University’s Director of Recreation and Athletics, cut the ribbon to celebrate the collaboration between Carefor and Carleton, but more importantly the participants who are overcoming the challenges involved with living with dementia.

Jennifer, Steve, Benoit-Antoine, Joel (left to right).

“Carefor is honoured to be the first agency to offer this kind of support for people with Young Onset Dementia,” Perry said. “The early success of the program shows that it’s having a meaningful impact [and] changing people’s lives for the better.”

Benoit-Antoine Bacon, President of Carleton University, said he was proud to host the program on a campus that takes pride in making everyone feel welcome.

“We’re always looking for ways to break down some of the barriers that exist for people who live with significant health challenges.”  

Joel Harden, MPP Ottawa Centre, also shared a few words on the importance of building up our communities and puncturing the stigma associated with dementia. 

He said every journey begins with a single step, and hopes that “maybe we can pick up on that journey together.”

Club members participating in a private fitness class.

After the ceremony, guests toured the facilities used by the program to understand a typical day for participants.  As part of the tour they visited the pool, field house, gymnasium and stopped by at the program’s private fitness class to see firsthand the impact that staying socially connected and physically active has on the lives of the participants.

As the number of people living with dementia is increasing, the need for support services are growing. Carefor and Carleton University are proud to meet the needs in the community and find ways to better enrich the lives of people who need it the most.  

For more information, click on “The Club.” 

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