The intention of Family Caregiving Essentials is to educate, inform and inspire family caregivers with helpful information and resources, wherever they are in the caregiving journey.  Over 40 local agencies, non-profits and associations will be present to offer advice and assistance.
Presentations will give general information, with opportunities for caregivers to know where they can get more information for specific issues.

We look forward to assisting you!

Here is what you missed in 2017…

Program Content
The Conversation Project and Longevity Planning
Every caregiver faces the challenge of asking parents or partners really difficult questions – What are end of life wishes? Is the paperwork in order for medical directives? Does it consider quality of life? Is a third party needed to intercede? What about the opinions of long-distance caregivers? Make those soul-searching questions manageable before a crisis hits.

Dementia
There are many forms of dementia and various stages. And the resulting behaviors can vary from person to person. Learn the latest thinking on what works using tools from structure and schedule, to sensory techniques and stuffed animals. Learn strategies to ease the burdens of caregiving. Caregivers will also learn about resources for support and education from the Alzheimer’s Association, WNY Alzheimer’s Partnership and others.

Caregivers and Finances
Caregivers in crisis can find themselves overwhelmed with paperwork. Learn how to organize and prepare for the long-term journey of caregiving to make the process easier and less stressful.

Veteran’s Care
Veterans have illnesses like everyone else, but there are specific concerns faced by both patient and caregivers. Learn from a VA nurse who runs a special support group that incorporates stress reduction techniques, including EFT (tapping) and mindfulness.

Functional Medicine
Is Functional Medicine the new answer to diagnosing a patient’s illness? Will the approach really bring healthcare professionals and patients closer together? A nurse practitioner certified in Functional Medicine will explain the approach.

Mindfulness in the medical profession – for healthcare professionals, patients and caregivers
A doctor and nurse in the VA medical system will give examples of how mindfulness is practiced in healthcare settings and how it makes a difference in the lives of healthcare professional and patients. Added to the conversation is a mindfulness professional that will add perspectives on mindfulness in eldercare, and how it works to bring stress reduction to caregivers.

Speed Dating for Caregivers
Here’s your chance to ask those burning questions for the concerns and challenges you face today. Our panelists are joined by other local service groups and agencies to guide you to the resources that meet your particular needs.

Resources, resources and more!
Meet members of the community who are passionate about caregiving. The presentations and relaxed atmosphere provides a supportive environment that every caregiver needs.

Program Note – The event is based around presentations with breaks to visit resource tables.

Host
Scott Scanlon, Editor – WNY Refresh, The Buffalo News

Speakers
Elizabeth Laczi, Regional Director of Memory Care, Elderwood
Sandra Burrows, Corporate Director of Memory Care, Elderwood
Laurie Menzies, Esq. Senior Partner, Pfalzgraf, Beinhauer & Menzier
Laura Funke, FNP Dent Neurologic Institute
Sarah Harlock, Program Director of the Integrative Center for Memory Health at Dent Neurologic Institute
Juli Chikarashi, Project Manager, Community Outreach Specialist – Supportive Care and Palliative Medicine, Erie County Medical Center
Samantha Rodgers, Licensed Master Social Worker, Supportive Care and Palliative Medicine Team – Erie County Medical Center
Susan Engel, RN-BC, MSN, CCM, CNS Memory Care Manager, VA WNY Healthcare System (ADHC)
Tricia Hughes, Dementia Education Specialist, Alzheimer’s Association of WNY
Stephanie McNair, Branch Manager – KeyBank, Grand Island
Arisha Roberts, Personal Banker – KeyBank, Tops Maple Rd.
Marcia Gliss, Support Group Facilitator, National Parkinson’s Foundation WNY
Amanda Bender, Erie County Senior Services
Dina Petrella, MSW, Regional Case Manager, WNY Alzheimer’s Caregiver Partnership
NY Connects
Archana Mishra MD, MS, FCCP, FACCP – Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine at the State University of New York at Buffalo.
Anne-Marie Huurre, Founder – Healing Caregivers

Longevity Planning

Laurie Menzies, Esq. Senior Partner, Pfalzgraf, Beinhauer & Menzier
Attorney Laurie Menzies guides seniors and their families through the aging process by coordinating their legal and financial concerns and addressing potential or existing care needs. Laurie is passionate about helping families create a plan for aging that helps preserve assets, while providing for the wishes and care needs of her clients.Drawing on her professional expertise as an elder law and estate planning attorney, as well as her personal experience as her parent’s sole caregiver well into their 90s, Laurie has recently published Embracing Elderhood, Planning for the Next Stage of Life.

Juli Chikarashi, Project Manager, Community Outreach Specialist – Supportive Care and Palliative Medicine, Erie County Medical Center
Juli’s passion for healthcare and the medical field stemmed from her time at the University of Illinois where she pursued a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology/Pre-med. After receiving her Master’s degree from Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Juli worked for nearly a decade as a genetics laboratory manager. Thereafter, she completed a Masters of Public Health degree from The University at Buffalo which enabled her to transition to her current position, funded by the Health Foundation of Western New York. Her focus is to deepen the impact of the ECMC Conversation Project, “Your Voice, Your Values” and expand the efforts of the ECMC Outreach Team to support community advance care planning efforts in Western New York.

Samantha Rodgers, Licensed Master Social Worker, Supportive Care and Palliative Medicine Team – Erie County Medical Center
Samantha’s commitment for helping others and passion for the medical field began during her time at SUNY Fredonia where she pursued a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work. Samantha continued her education at The University at Buffalo. Samantha recognizes the disparity in healthcare and the lack of services/coordination for family and caregivers of people with serious and chronic illnesses. Her focus is to assess the biopsychosocial needs of patients and their caregivers to address whole person needs. Samantha hopes to assist in identifying gaps in services and helps to increase access for people with serious illness and their caregivers.

Financial Wellness
Stephanie McNair, Branch Manager – KeyBank, Grand Island
Stephanie has been in banking for five years and truly enjoys assisting those in need. She thrives on helping others with financial wellness by reviewing all financial situations and searching for opportunities to grow and develop clients to success.

Arisha Roberts, Personal Banker – KeyBank, Tops Maple Rd.
Arisha started in the banking industry two years ago and is now a dedicated personal banker. She assists her clients in the area of financial wellness because she is determined that no one should stress over finances and with guidance it’s easier to succeed.

Dementia
Sandra Burrows, Corporate Director of Memory Care, Elderwood
Sandra is a leader in working with dementia patients throughout the United States. Her groundbreaking programs have enriched the lives of both patients and caregivers by giving caregivers hope. She accomplishes this by teaching the latest findings in how to best communicate with people who suffer from dementia and concentrates on showing what loved ones are capable of doing, rather than focusing on what they may no longer be able to do because of the stage of the disease. She works with health care professionals in educating them on the newest procedures of care and has delivered numerous enrichment programs in assisted living and nursing home settings.

Elizabeth Laczi, Regional Director of Memory Care, Elderwood
Elizabeth is a licensed speech pathologist with experience in clinical, school and homecare settings. In her work she teaches health care staff that by understanding an individual’s background and how dementia affects the brain, staff members are better able to understand what a person with dementia may be attempting to communicate. With new skills, staff can better respond with skill and sensitivity. Elizabeth is instrumental in connecting the many research centers in the area to work with Elderwood residents with the latest techniques and findings.

Veteran’s Care
Susan Engel, RN-BC, MSN, CCM, CNS Memory Care Manager, VA WNY Healthcare System (ADHC)
Susan has been a nurse for over 35 years. Her education includes an MSN, CNS with a focus on Palliative Care. Susan received her degrees at Daemen College in Amherst, New York. Susan holds an ANCC certification in Gerontological Nursing. Since dementia has one of the longest trajectories of palliative care, the opportunities to make a difference are boundless. Susan is currently dedicating her professional career to the increasing population of veterans with memory deficits, to their caregivers, and to the early detection, diagnosis and prevention of dementia diseases.

Functional Medicine
Laura Funke, FNP Dent Neurologic Institute
Laura has been a Family Nurse Practitioner for 17 years. She has been working in neurology for over 10 years specializing in caring for patients with Dementia, Stroke, Dizziness as well as general neurology.  She facilitates a support group for families who care for patients with dementia. Over the last few years she has been drawn to Functional Medicine, hoping to target and treat the root cause of disease. She is a Certified Holistic Educator and is currently working on her Functional Medicine certification through The Institute for Functional Medicine.

Resources
Sarah Harlock, Program Director of the Integrative Center for Memory Health at Dent Neurologic Institute
Sarah has been working in the field of geriatrics for over 20 years. Starting in long term care as an activity director, she quickly developed a passion for dementia care. In 2005, Sarah started working for the Alzheimer’s Association, Western New York Chapter as the Director of Care Consultation and then Development Director. She spent 2 years working in the Assisted Living system and 3 years as a Program Director for the New York State health department grants programs the Disease Assistance Center of Western New York and Center of Excellence for Alzheimer’s Disease. In her current role, Sarah helps patients and their care partners address the challenges of memory changes.

 

 

Tricia Hughes, Dementia Education Specialist, Alzheimer’s Association of WNY
Tricia was a caregiver for her father, which inspired her to start volunteering as an educator for the Alzheimer’s Association of WNY. Today she travels to eight WNY Counties, teaching professional and family caregivers, students and the general public about the basics of dementia and Alzheimer’s, various behavior and communications skills, as well as news about the latest research and brain health.

Dina Petrella, MSW, Regional Case Manager
If you are a caregiver of any age, we can help! We assist caregivers of persons with Alzheimer’s or other dementia. We help with care consultation and assessment, caregiver support, support groups, caregiver education, respite assistance, enrichment events, caregiver events and transportation.

Marcia Gliss, Support Group Facilitator
While living with PD can be challenging, there are many things you can do to maintain and improve your quality of life and live well with Parkinson’s disease. Marcia guides caregivers with education, support and encouragement.

A little laughter

Caren Kolerski. Certified Laughter Yoga Teacher, Life and Retreat Coach
Caren, who has worn caregiver moccasins for nearly three decades, passionately helps caregivers move through seasons of stress and change to recover joy and balance in their lives. She is available for consultations, coaching, custom retreats and seminars.

Mindfulness in the medical profession – for healthcare professionals, patients and caregivers

Archana Mishra MD, MS, FCCP, FACCP – Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine at the State University of New York at Buffalo. where she serves as the Associate Clerkship Director for third and fourth year medical students. She was awarded the Women Leaders in Medicine award by the American Medical Student Association.  Dr. Mishra has a passion for bringing the practice of mindfulness to the medical setting to be used by health care professionals personally, as well as when in practice.

Anne-Marie Huurre, Founder – Healing Caregivers