Elder Care: Be With – Letters to a Caregiver

Date: Thursday, January 17, 2019
Time: 11:30 am – 12:30 pm
Location: Koffler Student Services Centre, 214 College St., Room 313

In this session, Mike Barnes, author of Be With: Letters to a Caregiver will present some of the main themes of his book. The focus will be on dementia caregiving, but also touch on issues relevant to any caring relationship. These issues include: being alertly present (Be); sharing presence with another (With); how and how far to respect autonomy; learning from inevitable mistakes; balancing information and compassion; recovering simple fundamentals: music, touch, shared silence, nature; dementia as a process of continual change (including, at times, change for the better); adjusting on the fly, under pressure.

The presentation will thus consist of half a dozen segments, each with a topic briefly discussed and illustrated by a passage from the book. Mike will then open it up to questions and discussion, in the hopes of exchanging ideas and experiences about dementia and caregiving, along with any other topics that might have arisen of interest.

Facilitator: Mike Barnes is the author of ten books of poetry, short fiction, novels, and memoir. He has won the Danuta Gleed Award and a National Magazine Award Silver Medal for his short fiction, and the Edna Staebler Award for non-fiction. He lives in Toronto.

For more information on Mike Barnes, please see this CBC article.