The next step for the libraries was to see a memory cafe, held in a library, in action. A library representative from each library listed above, along with a staff member from the library system, took a field trip up to the Neenah Public Library to participate in a memory cafe held in a library setting. We observed the following: greeter at the main entrance directing guests to the program room, greeter at the program room door, registration table with name tags, refreshments, informational table, health care professional, peer greeters, volunteer, and a library staff member. In addition, there was a feeling of being welcomed and encouragement to just be yourself. It was a special program with live polka music so this included a lot of toe tapping, singing and a bit of dancing!
Interested librarians and ministry staff got together shortly after the library field trip to discuss the perceived need in our community for memory cafes and also logistics of offering memory cafes at churches, libraries or in other areas of the community. There were four libraries in particular that had a strong interest in moving forward. Those libraries included: Hartland, Pewaukee, Delafield and Town Hall in North Lake. Due to the proximity of the local libraries, this group formed and named itself the Lake Country Libraries Memory Project.
The four libraries selected two representatives from each library to form the memory project along with the Coordinator of Youth and Special Needs Services at Bridges Library System. As of today, 4/27/16, our team consists of: Cheryl Schoenhaar & Stephanie Flessert (Town Hall Library); Beth Savagian & Mary Dumar (Pewaukee Public Library); Jen Bremer & Stephanie Ramirez (Delafield Public Library); Nancy Massnick & Sara Swanson (Hartland Public Library); and Angela Meyers (Bridges Library System). We are also fortunate to be partnering with the Waukesha County Aging and Disability Resource Center and will be working with Vicki Beduze, Dementia Care Specialist. The Alzheimer’s Association of Southeastern Wisconsin is also partnering with us to provide training, registration for the cafes, program promotion, and also educational programs to the member libraries in Waukesha County.
Group Holds Kick Off Event
The Lake Country Libraries Memory Project team held their kick-off of their project on Friday, January 30 at the Pewaukee Public Library from 10:30am-Noon. Download the kick-off flyer (PDF). We had a great turnout with 70 people in attendance.