If you’re caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia, the first thing you need to know is that you’re not alone. A new report from the Alzheimer’s Association estimates that 6.9 million people age 65 and older in the U.S. are living with Alzheimer’s, including 54,900 in Nevada.

Neighbor Network of Northern Nevada (N4) recognizes that primary support people have a lot of questions. Especially those who are caring for a loved one who is newly diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia conditions. This is why we have partnered with the Alzheimer’s Association of Northern California and Northern Nevada to offer the Savvy Caregiver program.

Savvy Caregiver is one of the Dementia Care programs we offer to help people manage dementia diagnoses. We also provide support and guidance through BRI Care Consultations, free respite care throughout Northern Nevada, and partner with Living Alone & Connected, a social media based community for people with dementia, as well as our other resources.

Our Savvy Caregiver program provides primary support people with knowledge and skills to navigate the complexities of caring for someone with Alzheimer’s or dementia while letting them connect with other families facing similar challenges. The free, six-week course covers a variety of topics, including:

  • Self-care and navigating caregiver stress
  • Understanding the stages and progression of Alzheimer’s and dementia
  • Communication strategies for improved interactions with a loved one
  • Techniques for managing behavioral changes

Cristine Perez Marcos, Program Director for the Alzheimer’s Association of Northern California and Northern Nevada, emphasizes the importance and value of the Savvy Caregiver program. “A dementia diagnosis can be overwhelming, but the Savvy Caregiver program provides a roadmap for families,” she says. ”They gain valuable knowledge about the disease and develop practical skills, all while creating a network of people who can help them along the way. These courses make a real difference in how they care for their loved one, but also how they care for themselves and the rest of their families.”

Caring for someone with Alzheimer’s or dementia requires you to understand and adapt to changes in your loved ones’ physical and mental state as their condition progresses. The Savvy Caregiver program equips you with the tools to anticipate these changes and adjust your caregiving approach accordingly.

The next Savvy Caregiver training will be in Winnemucca:

  • Humboldt General Hospital, Sarah Winnemucca Conference Room, 118 E Haskell St. Winnemucca, NV
  • Friday Late Mornings, 11:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m.
  • Dates: May 31, June 7, 14, 21, 28 and July 3
    • Due to the holiday, the last session of the training classes will be Wednesday, July 3. 
  • To pre-register, visit: tinyurl.com/alznornvsavvy
  • If needed, financial assistance is available to provide a day of respite care while attending the training. A separate screening interview is required to receive this assistance.

For more information about the Savvy Caregiver program and a schedule of additional upcoming courses, you can contact Cristine Perez Marcos Bohen at cpmarcos@alz.org or by phone at (775) 254-0329. 

 N4 understands the impact caregiving can have on you, your families, and your friends. The Savvy Caregiver program empowers you with the knowledge and confidence caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s or dementia requires. 

Remember, you are not alone, we’re here to help you.