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Early Stage Support Groups
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For Persons in the Early Stages of Alzheimer's Disease or a Related Dementia and their Care Partners

Winter groups now forming in Abilene and Waco

In addition to the Early Stage Support Groups, the Alzheimer's Association has an Early Stage Social Engagement Program that meets on Fridays in Fort Worth

The Early Stage Support Group is a place for individuals with early stage Alzheimer's or similar dementia to meet others in like situations while their caregivers attend concurrent support group. In addition to traditional "support group" discussions, the facilitators arrange for a variety of activities, including exercise, art, outings and question and answer sessions on a variety of topics with local experts. One participant who was asked what he liked best about the Early Stage Support Group summed up the benefits of this group. He stated, "Everyone knows what it feels like when you come to the end of a sentence and can't remember what it was you wanted to say. The group keeps me from feeling like running to the corner to hide."

All potential participants of the Early Stage Support Group go through a screening process to determine eligibility. Individuals participating in the Early Stage Support Group should have the following list of characteristics.

  • Have a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s or related dementia documented by physician.
  • Are aware of the diagnosis
  • Acknowledge, at least occaisonally, memory loss or confusion.
  • Are able to express themselves and understand of others, even if there is some degree of difficulty with speech or word-finding
  • Are able and willing to discuss feelings and experiences related to illness.
  • Understand the purpose of support group, are interested and freely give consent to participate.
  • Have a caregiver or someone willing to serve as a contact person for group facilitator.

Fort Worth Early Stage Support Group
Begins Thursday, February 5, 2015
First and third Thursdays of the month
9:30 to 11:30 am
Email Joy Eckhardt or call 817-336-4949

Bedford Early Stage Support Group
Begins Tuesday, February 3, 2015
First and third Tuesdays of the month
9:30 to 11:30 am
Email Joy Eckhardt or call 817-336-4949

Abilene Pioneers
Begins Thursday, February 5, 2014
Meets on the 1st and 3rd Thursdays of each month from 4 to 6 pm
Abilene Regional Office
301 S. Pioneer, Suite 105
Abilene, TX  79615
For more information, please email Mindy Bannister or call 325-672-2907

Waco Early Stage Support Group
Begins Tuesday, February 3, 2015
Location to be Announced
For more information, please email Howard Gruetzner or call 254-753-7722

Or call 800-272-3900 to be directed to your local office.

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Alzheimer's Association

Our vision is a world without Alzheimer's
Formed in 1980, the Alzheimer's Association is the world's leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer's care, support and research.