Challenges and Opportunities of Dementia Friendly Initiatives in Massachusetts Outlined in Rutgers Research

New research from Rutgers University provides an overview of dementia friendly initiatives in Massachusetts, including their evolution and development across the state. The report outlines who is involved and how different initiatives go from a concept to local action.

Housed at the Massachusetts Councils on Aging Association, Dementia Friendly Massachusetts (DFM) leads the work through local councils on aging and a variety of partners, including the Massachusetts Healthy Aging Collaborative.

The Rutgers research involved interviews with local dementia friendly community leaders that talked about the structure of their initiatives, how they are supported and the opportunities and challenges they have experienced. Also included was how dementia friendly initiatives navigated through the pandemic. Some participants noticed that community members became more aware of the needs of older adults living with dementia and their care partners during the crisis. In addition, leaders capitalized on new partnerships, additional planning time, and virtual programming.

The full report is available here.