Dementia Friends is a global movement that is changing the way people think, act, and talk about dementia. Developed by the Alzheimer's Society in the United Kingdom, the Dementia Friends initiative is underway in Virginia.


Download the Infographic: How Dementia Friends Works
What is a Dementia Friend?
To become a Dementia Friend, you participate in a Dementia Friends Information Session presented by a Dementia Friends Champion. You will learn five key messages about dementia and a bit about what it's like to live with dementia. As a Dementia Friend you turn your new understanding of dementia into a practical action that can help someone living in your community. Your action can be big or small - because every action counts!
Download the Dementia Friends Information Session Flyer

Find an Information Session
What happens at a Dementia Friends Information Session?
The one-hour Information Session is an in-person experience run by a Dementia Friends Champion. It is not a formal training. The session has activities and discussion that cover the five key messages everyone should know about dementia. Everyone who attends is asked to do a dementia-friendly action as part of becoming a Dementia Friend, but the choice is yours.

Who are Dementia Friend Champions?
A Dementia Friends Champion participates in a Champions Training. The Champion can then present one-hour Dementia Friends sessions to friends, family, colleagues and the wider community.

Learn a Champion's roles and responsibilities

Register for a Champions Training

Valley Program for Aging Services held their first Dementia Friends Info Session
at their all-staff meeting in September. Nearly 60 team members participated.
Dementia Friends in the News

Rappahannock Westminster Canterbury hosts 'dementia friendly' discussion (Jan 2019)

WCVE's Charles Fishburne, who recently became a Dementia Friend Champion, published a story about our Dementia Friends and Dementia Friendly Virginia efforts (November 2018)

Listen to LeadingAge Virginia President & CEO Melissa Andrews as she discusses the need for and value of the Dementia Friends initiative on AGING MATTERS radio show
(July 2018)

State, organizations push communities to become dementia friendly (Richmond Times-Dispatch (May 2018)

20,000 young people become Dementia Friends
(Alzheimer's Society, UK, March 2018)

Changing the Way Way We Look at Dementia
(Kaiser Health News, Feb 2018)

Improving the quality of life for people living with dementia (News8,, Feb 2018)

Unsure how to interact with someone who has dementia? This group aims to help (The Washington Post, Feb 2017)