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Alzheimer Portugal and partners open new Memory Cafes

Saturday 15 March 2014

The Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Lisboa - one of the most important and well known institutions of the Portuguese third sector - has opened two new Memory Cafes in Lisbon, in cooperation with private company Sonae and Alzheimer Portugal.

The "Memory Cafe" concept launched in Portugal in April 2013 and was immediately successful, demonstrating the social relevance of this initiative for people with dementia. It is part of a broader project called “Cuidar Melhor” (Better Care) which also has the support of several institutional partners and three municipalities of the District of Lisbon: Cascais, Oeiras and Sintra.

“Memory Cafe" is a meeting place for people with memory problems or dementia, as well as for their family members and caregivers. In these Cafés, users can exchange experiences and receive practical information and emotional support. This is an international and widespread concept, particularly in the UK.

The meetings are led by health professionals with the support of trained volunteers in an informal and protected setting, contributing to the improvement of quality of life and reduction of social stigma and isolation. There are now three Memory Cafes in Lisbon and another in Cascais and meetings take place one Saturday per month at each locale.