What Dianne is Reading – What Communities Can Do for the Growing Numbers of People with Dementia and How Keiro Can Help

In this feature of the Genki Living® blog, I would like to share with you helpful articles, interesting research, and useful health information that I came across recently.

The National Alliance for Caregiving on August 23, 2016, featured a story about a Japanese city’s community approach to deal with the increasing numbers of people with dementia.  Recognizing the growing number of people with dementia and/or Alzheimer’s disease, the city of Matsudo has been providing dementia awareness training for its residents since 2010. Thousands of people have taken this 60-90 minute course. According to Tadashi Watanabe, chief of Matsudo’s Welfare and Longevity Department, the goal is “to support those with dementia, as well as their families, and make this a town where it’s more comfortable for them to live.” Japan has now adopted dementia training as a national policy and is aiming to train 8 million people by the end of the next fiscal year.

Japan is not alone in this effort to educate communities about dementia. At the recent White House Conference on Aging, Senator Bill Frist, national spokesperson for Dementia Friendly America announced, “Starting in these communities, we’re building a nation-wide effort to educate Americans about dementia, equip business owners and first responders to recognize and asset those with memory loss, and empower people with Alzheimer’s and dementia to engage independently and safely in community life for as long as possible.”

Communities that are promoting these efforts include: Tempe, AZ; Santa Clara County, CA; Denver, CO; Prince George’s County, MD; Knoxville, TN; and the state of West Virginia.


These programs are examples of organizations and people in communities working collaboratively to address one of the highest needs identified by KEIRO in Our Community – memory and cognitive disabilities. These programs cross KEIRO’s three core program areas of Services to Older Adults, Support of Caregivers, and even Programs for Current Residents of KEIRO’s Former Facilities. They are also examples of several of KEIRO’s future strategies, including collaboration and partnership, convening, and design of new programs.

These programs bring to mind what local community organizations, temples, and churches could accomplish through new and innovative programs that could be funded by KEIRO’s new Grants Program.

KEIRO’s Genki Living Programs support individuals to obtain, process, and understand health information so that they can manage their health for optimal wellness.

KEIRO® is expanding our reach from a focus on long term health care facilities to broadly engaging and supporting thousands of Japanese American and Japanese older adults throughout Los Angeles, Ventura and Orange counties. KEIRO provides services to older adults and caregivers, along with programs for residents of KEIRO’s former facilities—helping older adults in Our Community to age the way they choose.


About the Author: 

Dianne Kujubu BelliDianne Kujubu Belli in lobby is the Chief Administrative Officer of Keiro. Dianne stays genki by doing cardio and light weight training four days a week at the gym and dances Argentine tango.



The material presented on this site is for informational purposes only and does not necessarily represent the opinions of Keiro, or its contributors. Readers should consult appropriate health, legal, or financial professionals on any matter relating to their health and well-being.  Full disclaimer




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