First Memory Café to open this summer in Stone Mountain

DeKalb County officials said they are hoping to make the county more welcoming to people with brain disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, with the opening of the first Memory Café in Stone Mountain this summer.

Memory Café will open at East Central DeKalb Community and Senior Center at 4885 Elam Road in Stone Mountain, stated officials. The cafés are designed to welcome individuals with Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, or other brain disorders, with activities and education through music, dancing, crafts, painting, and informal conversation. The cafes are intended to create new friendships and activities to foster reminiscing, states the Memory Café website.

According to officials with Alzheimer’s Association, a nonprofit that works to advance global efforts to improve the lives of people affected by dementia, Memory Cafés are beneficial because they provide social gatherings that allows people experiencing memory loss and their loved ones to connect, socialize, and build new support networks. Memory Cafés are free to attend and welcome to all, according to Alzheimer’s Association’s website.

While brain diseases are often considered to be a condition for the elderly, younger people and those in their 40s, 50s and 60s may also be impacted with early-onset dementia and can benefit from attending a Memory Café, said officials.

Because dementia affects people all over the county, officials with DeKalb County’s Human Service Department said they partnered with the state of Georgia and community members to find ways for people with the disease to live comfortably and safely while also aiding caregivers.

“We’re thankful for the support to spotlight dementia in DeKalb County,” said Damon Scott, director of the DeKalb County Human Services Department. “It is extremely important to continue raising awareness and providing resources because it’s affecting thousands of people in our communities.”

While the new East Central DeKalb Community and Senior Center—which opened in 2023—will be the home of the first Memory Café in the county, DeKalb County Commissioner Steve Bradshaw said he expects to see more of “these much-needed resources.”

“The Memory Café will provide individuals dealing with memory loss, and their caregivers, a place to commune and participate in activities and educational sessions designed to enhance their quality of life,” said Bradshaw. “I am looking forward to all of the county centers creating Memory Cafés.”

For more information, contact Debra Furtado at dlfurtado@dekalbcountyga.gov.

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