Memory Kits

August 30, 2018

Memory Kit Contents

In Minnesota, more than 100,000 people are living with dementia and thousands more experience memory loss to a point that it concerns the individuals or their families. Emerald Crest by Augustana Care partnered with the Hopkins ACT on Alzheimer’s, Augustana Care Open Circle Adult Day Services, Augustana Care Chapel View, Gethsemane Lutheran Church, the City of Hopkins, Hopkins Public Schools, Metropolitan Area Agency on Aging and more, and together their collaborative effort has produced many great initiatives to help make their community more dementia friendly

Areas of focus identified by this collaboration were to increase awareness of the disease, provide helpful resources available to people with dementia and their families, and provide caregivers with education and support. With a goal to bring community together to educate and foster a safe and respectful community for people living with dementia and their families, several projects were created and rolled out, such as: 

  • Educational events and presentations
  • Viewing of a dementia related film and discussion afterwards
  • Experience a program which immerses participants into life with dementia
  • Launch of memory cafés

Another tool this project has created are memory-minder kits. Memory kits are created for caregivers of those experiencing memory loss. Each item in the kit is specifically selected to spark memories, create conversation and provide positive and engaging interactions between people with Alzheimer’s and other dementia-related conditions, and their care partner. The kits also offer resources and supportive materials for the caregiver as well.

Contents:

There are kits with different themes and activities, but a memory kit on games will contain:

  • Crossword puzzles
  • Word search games
  • Coloring pages
  • Blue Sky White Clouds book
  • Scavenger hunt activity
  • Penny ante games
  • Sensory stories
  • Puzzles
  • Instructions for each activity
  • Also included are coloring pencils and a dry erase marker for laminated games

The kit focused on caregivers may include items such as:

  • Caregiver stress meditation CD
  • “A Caregiver’s Guide to Dementia” book
  • 10 Things to Know bookmarks
  • 101 Activities for Caregivers and Dementia Patients
  • Resource guide from Hopkins ACT on Alzheimer’s

Resources:

To create a memory kit of your own or have some items on hand to use at home, here are some resources to find various word games, engaging conversation tips, coloring pages, books and more: 

  • Crossword puzzles:  www.keepingbusy.com
  • Conversation starters:  www.thematicliving.com
  • Scavenger hunts:  www.thematicliving.com
  • Blue Sky White Clouds Book:  www.amazon.com
  • “14,000 Things to be Happy About” by Barbara Ann Kipfer
  • “Color Your Mind” A coloring book for those with Alzheimer’s and the people who love them by Maria Shriver
  • Coloring pages - search on internet for adult coloring pages where you’ll find several options

The community support has been expansive and the memory kits have proven to be a wonderful resource for those with dementia and their caregivers. Kits can be checked out from Gethsemane Lutheran Church in Hopkins, and the Hopkins Community Center. More kits and locations will be available in the future, including here at Emerald Crest. We’d like to incorporate the memory kits and have some available for families to use when they visit a loved one at Emerald Crest.

With four locations in Burnsville, Minnetonka, Victoria, and Shakopee, Minnesota, Emerald Crest by Augustana Care senior care communities are truly inspired by our residents and families. With a deep knowledge of memory care, we offer a specialized assisted living setting for seniors with Alzheimer’s and other dementia-related conditions. This experience allows us to create opportunities and personalized care for your loved one that goes beyond conventional senior memory care. Contact us today if you have questions about the memory kits or would like to schedule a tour.

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The layout of Emerald Crest is terrific, its like visiting a home (not the hospital hallway, with a small lounge on the end!)  The health care model of Emerald Crest  is “OUTSTANDING”.  The professional staff provide care with love, hugs, and individual attention.  The caregivers were of the same mode.  We were fortunate to choose Emerald Crest for mom!

— Gary, son of Emerald Crest resident

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