Custom Workshops

In the philosophy of doing With and not To, we look forward to working with you to customize your workshop(s) based on your wants and needs. We can vary the workshop length(s) and coverage depending on what we determine together works best for you.

Examples of what can work well:

  • Full day workshops
  • 2 hour recurring sessions
  • Back-to-back 2 or 3 hour focused workshops with learner rotation

Focuses can include, but are not limited to:

1) Foundational dementia related information and common brain changes, learning to respond to changes in cognition and abilities in ways that are supportive.

  • Recognize the differences in ‘Normal’ and ‘Not Normal’ aging.
  • Understand what dementia is, what is true about dementia, what are the types of dementia, and how many types are there?
  • Respond to a person’s change in cognition and abilities in a way that is not hurtful or offensive, but supportive.
  • Understand that, with practice, common “reactions” to the person with dementia can become thoughtful “responses” that improve quality of life for everyone involved.
  • Recognize that the person with dementia is “doing the best they can” and if something isn’t working, it’s the responsibility of the Care Partner to change their approach toward the person living with dementia as well as to discover what can be done differently to address the challenging situation.

2) Care Partnering techniques, applying knowledge and skill in Positive Approach® philosophy, Positive Physical Approach™ (PPA) and Hand-under-Hand® (HuH).

  • Rehearse preventative approach and interpersonal techniques that reduce negative impulsive reactions and overall distress.
  • Practice assistive techniques for various levels of cognitive impairment, emphasizing use of preserved abilities.
  • Recognize how connect so that a person knows you are coming, wants you there, and is willing to work with you.
  • Enable care partners to shift from simply ‘dealing with behaviours’ to creating a positive and supportive care environment.
  • Understand how to tap into motor memories to do with not to or for someone and to cue self care.

3) Using the GEMS® Abilities Model to recognize the value of noticing the functional abilities of the person living with dementia and supportive responses that match.

  • Recognize the dynamic nature of the human brain and its abilities, acknowledging that everyone’s abilities can change in a moment.
  • Rather than focusing on a person’s loss when there is brain change, see individuals as precious, unique, and capable.
  • Notice cognitive and functional ability changes and understand how to adapt to be supportive.
  • Recognize that with the right setting and the right care all GEMS can shine.
  • Learn to offer support that matches appropriate to the individuals GEM state, abilities, and their unmet needs.

Objectives of training:

  • Enhance awareness and knowledge of dementia
  • Understand and recognize cognitive and functional ability changes that occur throughout the progression of dementia
  • Recognize the value of noticing the functional ability of the person living with dementia and supportive responses that match
  • Identify value of consistent positive reinforcement and proactive interventions to promote well-being and reduce challenging situations
  • Provide care partners with the ability to recognize unmet needs and the skills to change their own behaviour to better meet those needs
  • Improve day-to-day interactions
  • Increase satisfaction of people living with dementia and their care partners

Contact Jessica at or (519)-274-9090 to inquire or book today.