The Art of Living with Dementia

Facilitating meaningful interactions with people living with dementia through improvisational arts and embodied non-violent communication. 

Following my mother's diagnosis with Alzheimer’s at the age of 58, I was motivated to understand how to better support and care for her, my father and myself. I embarked on a journey that taught me how to use the arts, creativity, humor, education, and technology to inspire, empower and enhance the quality of life and quality of care of those affected by dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease. Between 2014-2017 I was a Vanier Scholar at the University of Toronto funded by the Canadian Institute on Health Research, and a dementia care activist. I funded the initiative Arts For Dementia, and lead the creative research groups De-pathologizing Dementia and MemoryShift both of which culminated with international conferences. I wrote and published Keeper of the Clouds which functions as a gentle guide for how to listen and interact with individuals living with dementia. 

This talk was first given in 2017 at a TEDx event in Toronto, Canada.  

I accompany the talk by workshops for health teams, care practitioners and family members caring for individuals living with dementia, Alzheimer's and other neurodegenerative conditions.  

Testimonials

Liza, thank you!

Liza, the wake on Saturday was so so so beautiful and a big part of it was the inspiration and support you offered me, so thank you!

Meghan Hellstern
Human-centered design, public sector innovation, facilitation and capacity-building

Liza not only guided our meetings but also coordinated our individual research efforts between meetings

What stands out most of all is Liza's vision is her ability to engage people and to bring out their best - to achieve surprising results.

Mark McAlister

If you have a chance to work with Liza, do not pass it up! She is wonderful!

She truly cares about the betterment of the world and all those around her. She will do all she can to help you improve your life and support you in your journey

Nataliya Zlotnikov
Healthcare content writer at Embodia Inc, Founder & Personal trainer at Emergency Room Fitness, Dancer at KasheDance

Liza is a heart-centred soul and a true artist

I have had the pleasure of facilitating a grief circle with Liza, in which she created a container of safety, empathy, and creative expression for our participants. We have also collaborated on her visual story "The Nine-Month Snail Dance" in which she shared her deeply personal story about grief, acceptance, and healing. 

Jessica Fan
Senior Advisor at Canadian Digital Service | Systems Change, Design Strategy, Executive Coaching

a resource for anyone seeking to resolve conflict and trauma.

Liza’s sincere passion for deep trauma healing and conflict negotiation is evident in the work that she does and shines through in the many conversations we’ve had. In combination with the knowledge and tools she has, this makes her a resource for anyone seeking to resolve conflict and trauma.

Teresie Schafranek Solum Hommersand 

What a beautiful book!

I received Keeper of the Clouds. What a beautiful book! Thank you for sharing. Moments like this happen often with my mother, though I don't think mom has Alzheimer's, maybe some dementia.  I think a lot has to do with her hearing loss, but she does get confused. The book makes me aware that I just have to keep smiling and taking things as they come.

C.W.
Varna, Ontario

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