Susan Ryan sits down with her good friend and colleague, Mike Belleville. After a career in telecommunications and as a member of the Rhode Island National Guard for over a decade, Mike was diagnosed with early onset dementia.
While devastating, Mike has not let the diagnosis define him. He currently serves on the board of directors for Dementia Action Alliance and the Council on Aging. He recently participated in a year-long dementia initiative hosted by The Green House Project, known as Best Life Impact, where he offered counsel and guidance to nursing home providers and care teams across the country to better equip them to support people living with dementia.
Mike is adamant about using his voice to encourage and advocate for others and challenge beliefs and stigmas about people living with dementia.
Mike, who is joined by his wife, Cheryl, in this episode, talks about the power of family and relationships in providing support, understanding, and acceptance. The couple describe the path they took to find hope and tangible solutions in their journey and the need for caregiver support and respite, as well as the impact of COVID-19 on routines, normalcy and vital human connections.
Connect with Mike on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/michael-r-belleville-584b1b40
Find out more about the work of the Dementia Action Alliance here: https://daanow.org/