Minds in Motions programming through the Alzheimer Society of Manitoba is ready to start again in Portage la Prairie.

Minds in Motion unites families and communities, connecting people with mild to moderate signs of dementia through exercise, socialization and engaging activities to enjoy with a family member or community care partner. 

Starting on January 24 and going every Wednesday for eight weeks from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., the program is taking place at the Herman Prior Activity Centre.

Jennifer Harder, the North Central Regional Coordinator of the Alzheimer Society of Manitoba, tells PortageOnline that she invites everyone taking care of someone with mild to moderate signs of memory loss to come to and participate in the program.

"Come for an hour of exercise, some coffee and conversation and some brain trivia-type games," she continues. "It's also a great chance for care partners to get out and talk to some other people that share the same experiences and that sort of thing. It's a nice chance to connect and enjoy some socialization, too."

Minds in Motion helps participants feel empowered in their daily lives through:

  • Staying Active: Physical activity can help participants feel better while reducing stress and maintaining overall health. 
  • Staying Connected: Meaningful social activities are important for people with dementia and their care partners. 
  • Staying Engaged: Activities that challenge the mind, such as word puzzles and memory games, which are good for brain health. 

"This program is really meant for both the person living with dementia and their care partner to enjoy," says Nicole McDonald, Dementia-Friendly Community Program Manager at the Alzheimer Society of Manitoba. "It's a nice way to do something fun together." 

The eight-week program costs $65 for a pair of people to attend. 

"Socialization is such an important thing, and a program like this just gives people an opportunity for care partners or people living with signs of memory loss. It can be a very isolating experience. So, sometimes, it's nice to get out and connect, and it's easier to do that when you're working and spending time with people in the same situation. It is a friendly and judgment-free environment," says Harder.

January holds a special significance in raising awareness about Alzheimer's disease, as it is observed as Alzheimer's Awareness Month in Canada.