Our Beginning

 

 

In our clinical work over the past years, our multi-disciplinary senior care

team observed that many adults living with memory challenges are

disheartened by their apparent inability to read. Collaborating with people

living with dementia, we identified the barriers many residents encounter

when attempting to read. With residents taking the lead, we experimented

with a variety of modifications to text, language, graphic layout, content and

illustrations to increase the readability of printed material for older adults.

 

Applying these adaptations, we developed a collection of short books and

articles that most people living with memory challenges can enjoy

independently. Readers’ responses to these books have been overwhelmingly

positive. Leisurely reading through a book, at their own pace, in their own

way, is a simple pleasure they deeply appreciate.

 

Wondering how our adapted reading material would be received by a broader

range of readers, in different settings, we brought our books to a variety of long-

term care and assisted living communities as a pilot program. We in-serviced staff members and support partners regarding how to use the books and to optimize residents' reading experiences.
 

During multiple care community visits, we observed staff members and residents

using the books. Residents, staff, volunteers and family members of each

community endorsed the books enthusiastically and provided helpful input for further improvements.  

 

Our pilot program confirmed our belief that there is an enormous need for

recreational reading material designed to compensate for the particular visual,

attention, memory and language deficits of people living with cognitive changes. Although conventional newspapers, magazines and books are inaccessible to

most older adults, their desire to read for pleasure, on their own, remains strong. 

 

Following the direction of individuals living with dementia, Reading2Connect® was born.

Seniors with Dementia Reading

Susan Ostrowski, MA, MS, CCC-SLP

Speech-Language Pathologist

Reading2Connect®, Co-Creator, President

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Reading2Connect® is honored to receive the following recognitions.

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2021 Mather Institute Promising
Practices Award Winner

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2021 Beryl Institute Patient Experience Research Grant

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2020 American Speech and Hearing Association Recent Clinical

Achievement Award 

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2021 Dementia SMART Winner

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Enabling more people to access The Reading2Connect® Program, we're proud to partner with the AGEucate® Training Institute. AGEucate is a dynamic, progressive organization creating better lives for older adults nationally and across the globe.                                                              

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AGEucate is igniting change in aging services. AGEucate delivers

effective and affordable staff and support partner education, and

brings life enrichment programs to adults living with cognitive changes.

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Reading2Connect® works to change the culture of aging by collaborating with the following groups who are at the forefront of person-centered, self-directed living for older adults.

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