ADAPT Providing Guidance and Direction

Imagine you are finally going on a well-deserved vacation. You have been looking forward to it for a long time. You start your trip on a beautiful sunny day. You aren’t driving so you eventually doze off. After a while you wake up not knowing how long you have slept. The sky is no longer sunny. It is dark. It seems to be getting darker by the minute. Nothing looks familiar. Your driver seems disoriented. You wonder if there is enough fuel in the tank to get to the next service station. You are afraid. You aren’t sure where you are or how to get back to where you wanted to be. The thoughts of a wonderful vacation have vanished. You are in the middle of nowhere with no way to get back. You fight back tears. You try not to panic!

These are the feelings of many family members that have had a loved one diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. They know the journey will be long, but have no idea how long. They know the days seem dark, but aren’t sure how dark the days will get. Their loved one is disoriented, and unable to help. They don’t know which way to turn, or where to get the strength to make the journey. Getting back to “normal” is no longer an option. The fear and confusion is devastating.

Meeting the urgent needs of such families is the purpose behind the Alzheimer’s Dementia Awareness Professional Team. ADAPT is a group of professionals that have three commonalities. First, each member is skilled in a field associated with helping families deal with Alzheimer ’s and other forms of dementia. Second, each team member has personally been touched by the tragedy of dementia in their own family. Thirdly, the team members are motivated by a sincere concern for others that are struggling with dementia related diseases.

The team is made up of five professionals. Robert Brown and Paul Mastrovito both hold Master of Social Work degrees. David Hudson is a Registered Financial Consultant, and Certified Estate Planner, Matthew Cabe is a local attorney, and Susan Vincent is an educator that teaches coping skills to caregivers.

The group was formed in late 2013. Their initial work began with offering educational seminars in libraries, churches, facilities, and senior centers. The series is designed to give hope and direction to loved ones dealing with dementia. The four, one hour programs cover understanding the distinction between normal aging and dementia, dealing with financial concerns, understanding legal rights, and managing difficult behaviors in the middle and later stages of the disease.

Phase two begin in January of 2015 when ADAPT opened their toll-free 24 hour per day phone line. Families dealing with the challenges of dementia can call 1-855-290-5300 to get direction and information on any of the four areas of concern. They can also receive referrals to other professional help as needed.

ADAPT neither ask for nor accepts financial compensation for their work. All expenses are paid for by team members from their own funds.