Caregiver support group to feature “Living with Dementia the Wabi-Sabi Way” by Mary Therese Perez Hattori, Ed.D.
Through storytelling, readings, photography, and personal reflections, Mary Therese Perez Hattori, a native CHamoru of Guam, will share her unique and profound perspective on caring for someone with dementia in Isa Psychological Services Center’s online family caregiver support groups at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 20, and at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 23.
Her talk, titled “Living with Dementia the Wabi-Sabi Way,” will illustrate the beauty that can be found in impermanence and imperfection and offer family caregivers of persons with dementia a way to face the arduous journey of caregiving with grace.
Hattori is one of nine children of Fermina Leon Guerrero Perez Hattori (familian Titang) and Paul Mitsuo Hattori. Holding a Doctor of Education, she is acting director of the Pacific Islands Development Program at the East-West Center in Hawaii and affiliate faculty for the University of Hawai’i. She is also a poet, community organizer, and advocate for Micronesians and other Pacific Islanders in the United States.
Hattori will be available after her presentations to answer questions from the group participants.
The sessions are free of charge to partners, family members, and other caregivers of persons with dementia throughout Micronesia. All support groups are client-centered and confidential.
This month’s groups will be held at the following times:
The caregiver support groups will be held year-round in 2021 at 6 p.m. on Wednesdays and 10 a.m. on Saturdays in the first and third weeks of each month. The support groups will be conducted remotely on Zoom during the pandemic.
The support groups provide a safe place to share the stresses and challenges, successes and rewards of caring for a loved one with dementia with others who may be going through similar experiences. They also provide a forum for caregivers to participate in presentations led by health care professionals and other community members with expertise in caring for persons with dementia.
The support groups are facilitated by Iain Twaddle of Isa Psychological Services Center, who holds a doctorate in clinical psychology; Health Services of the Pacific social worker Rhoda Orallo, who holds a master’s in social work; and Isa counselor Nikolas Gutierrez, who holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology.
The support groups launched in August in collaboration with the UOG School of Health’s Guam/Micronesia Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program.
To attend a family caregiver online support group, use the following Zoom links: