UOG offers free certification program on dementia-related behaviors


Throughout the month of June, the University of Guam’s Isa Psychological Services Center will provide an opportunity for family caregivers of persons with dementia to participate in an online training and certification program called CARES® Dementia-Related Behavior™.

This award-winning program focuses on learning how to respond to challenging and socially inappropriate behavior that often accompanies dementia. Participants will learn effective ways to support persons with dementia who are feeling confused, frustrated, scared, or angry and how to respond when persons with dementia exhibit behavior that is disruptive or aggressive.

The program includes four modules that participants can complete on either Wednesdays from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. or Saturdays from 10 a.m. to noon according to the following schedule:

Module 1 – Introduction to Dementia-Related Behavior:

6 p.m. – 8 p.m., Wednesday, June 2, or
10 a.m. – noon, Saturday, June 5

Module 2 – Using the CARES® Approach with Dementia-Related Behavior:

6 p.m. – 8 p.m., Wednesday, June 9, or
10 a.m. – noon, Saturday, June 12

Module 3 – Breaking Down the CARES® Approach for Dementia-Related Behavior:

6 p.m. – 8 p.m., Wednesday, June 16, or
10 a.m. – noon, Saturday, June 19

Module 4 – Key Responses to Dementia-Related Behavior:

6 p.m. – 8 p.m., Wednesday, June 23, or
10 a.m. – noon, Saturday, June 26

Participants who complete all four modules will receive a certificate of completion and will be eligible for CARES® Dementia Certification.

CARES® was created by HealthCare Interactive®, an organization that specializes in online training for caregivers of persons with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. All of the CARES® training programs were developed in collaboration with the Alzheimer’s Association and include evidence-based strategies grounded in the Alzheimer’s Association Dementia Care Practice Recommendations.

Support group sessions throughout 2021

The CARES® Dementia-Related Behavior™ training sessions are part of Isa’s ongoing online support groups for family caregivers of persons with dementia being conducted in collaboration with the UOG School of Health’s Guam/Micronesia Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program. Support group sessions will be held remotely on Zoom year-round in 2021. The sessions are free of charge to partners, family members, and other caregivers of persons with dementia who live in or have ties to Guam and the Micronesian region.

What to expect

All support groups are client-centered and confidential. They provide a safe place to share the stresses and challenges, successes, and rewards of caring for a loved one with dementia with others who may be going through similar experiences. They also provide a forum for caregivers to participate in presentations led by health care professionals and other community members with expertise in dementia care.

The support groups are facilitated by clinical psychologist Dr. Iain Twaddle of Isa Psychological Services Center; Health Services of the Pacific social worker Rhoda Orallo, who holds a master’s in social work; and Isa counselor Nikolas Gutierrez, who holds a bachelor’s in psychology.

How to participate

To attend a family caregiver online support group, use the following Zoom links:

Wednesday Support Group (6 p.m. – 8 p.m.): https://zoom.us/j/92072878067
Saturday Support Group (10 a.m. – noon): https://zoom.us/j/91243370958

For assistance or more information, call or email Dr. Iain Twaddle or Nikolas Gutierrez at (671) 735-2883 or isa@triton.uog.edu or Rhoda Orallo at (671) 735-3277 or nfcspmgr@teleguam.net.

(UOG Release)