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Celebrating 40 Years
of Empathy and Defining the Future

Tuesday, February 15, 2022 from 12-4 PM EST

OVERVIEW

Finding purpose every day is a basic human right and it is crucial that activity and life enrichment professionals are valued, respected and supported as much as any other discipline in the senior living profession. Meaningful engagement needs to be understood as just as important as the medical and clinical needs of elders. To achieve this, we must have empathy, show respect and prioritize effective communication with caregivers and Elders. Validation is the most innovative, proven and operationally sound way to support formal and informal caregivers. This event will draw on 40 years of groundbreaking innovation, highlight collaboration with all stakeholders and focus on current needs of today’s caregivers in order to create a path to continue innovating and supporting the lives of elders worldwide. 

Objectives

  • Attendees will be able to outline the basic elements of the evidence-based Validation method
  • Attendees will be able to describe the success of current stakeholders in dementia focused care who are using Validation
  • Attendees will be able to understand the current innovations in Validation and what the future holds for enhancing dementia care with Validation

SESSION 1: 12-1 PM EST

Innovations of the Past and Celebrating Success

Over the past 40 years, the Validation Training Institute (VTI) has been one of the most innovative organizations in the field of dementia care and they will continue to innovate over the next 40 years. The first major disruptor in the field and the founder of the Validation method, Naomi Feil, will begin this session with a pre-recorded message talking about how she developed Validation and the struggle she had to shift the gestalt of elder care. She will describe how she made respect and dignity a priority in care. Executive Director of VTI, Vicki de Klerk-Rubin, will then provide an overview of the innovations of VTI over the years and how that has paved the way for optimizing person-centered care and communication for older adults living with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. Hedwig Neu, Nursing Educator, Validation- Master/Teacher, Head of the “Authorized Center for Validation,” Diakonsissen Speyer, will describe her success leading an Authorized Validation Organization (AVO) in Germany over the past 20 years and how that has made a difference for staff and older adults. 

Objectives

  • Attendees will learn about the history of Validation and understand how Naomi Feil’s techniques can be used to improve how they communicate and engage with older adults living with ADRD in their care.
  • Attendees will be able to outline how an Authorized Validation Organization works and how it can improve resident engagement for older adults and improve staff job satisfaction.
  • • Attendees will be able to define the Validation method and understand how they can integrate basic Validation techniques into their daily caregiving to offer meaningful resident engagement opportunities to all residents.

Vicki de Klerk Rubin

Executive Director
Validation Training Institute

Naomi Feil

Validation method founder

Hedwig Neu

Validation- Master/Teacher, Head of the “Authorized Center for Validation,” Diakonsissen Speyer

BREAK: 1-1:15 PM EST

SESSION 2: 1:15-2:15 PM EST

Innovation through Inspiring Stories

This session will be moderated by Kevin Carlin, Validation Training Institute board member, Principal and Chief Sales and Culture Officer at Meridian Senior Living. Scott Averill, CEO of Brookside & Wellsville Retirement Communities and former VTI Board member, is a pioneer in integrating Validation group work into long-term care communities for over 20 years.  Chris Byrne is a marketing professional who discovered that simple Validation techniques helped him find a loving relationship and better communicate with his father in his final years. Odile LaVault is an Recreation Therapist and Validation Teacher who has found interesting ways of incorporating Validation into her creative work with older adults and teaching others who work in residential communities. Heather Easterling is a Recreation Therapist and Validation Teacher hailing from Denver, Colorado. Heather is the Sr. Dir. Of Engagement and Program Services for Sunrise Senior Living where she champions quality of life and innovations in purposeful programming. Heather is a currently obtaining her master’s degree in Aging and Dementia Studies at Texas State University. Heather is also a care partner for her father who is living with vascular dementia. These panelists will be sharing how Validation has impacted their life and the lives of those they care for. They will explain why Validation is an important tool especially for those caring for older adults living with Alzheimer’s disease or a related dementia.

Objectives

  • Attendees will be able to understand how a family caregiver uses basic Validation techniques and understanding of the principles to better communicate with their loved one.
  • Attendees will be able to feel the impact of integrating Validation group work into residential communities for older adults.
  • Attendees will learn creative ways of using Validation skills in their everyday work and be inspired to create new ways that suit their needs.

Scott Averill

CEO, Brookside and Wellsville Retirement Communities

Chris Bryne

Caregiver

Odile LaVault

Memory Care Educator

Heather Easterling

Sr. Director of Engagement and Program Services, Sunrise Senior Living

Moderator: Kevin Carlin

Validation Training Institute board member, Principal and Chief Sales and Culture Officer at Meridian Senior Living

BREAK: 2:15-2:30PM EST

SESSION 3: 2:30-3:30PM EST

Innovations for the Future

If you are a caregiver, professional or non-professional, serving older adults living with Alzheimer’s disease or a related dementia, you cannot successfully provide meaningful, person-centered engagement if you don’t embrace Validation innovations. All of the innovations that were born out of Naomi Feil’s founding of the Validation method truly serve as the bedrock of all future innovation. In this session, attendees will hear from Dr. Fiona Kerr, Founder and CEO of the NeuroTech Institute, Dr. Kerr will outline how she sees Validation work in the future regarding its biological effects on the brain. Dr. LaDon Jones will then discuss preliminary results from an innovative study being conducted on the impact of music on mood by the National University In San Diego and Meridian Senior Living.

Objectives

  • Attendees will be able to outline one or two innovations in the field of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias and how they connect with the Validation method.
  • Attendees will be able to understand how Validation techniques can have an impact on the brain and biology that improves resident health and wellbeing in a measurable way.
  • Attendees will be able to describe how music impacts mood of older adults and how that can be used to improve resident engagement everyday in their work.

Dr. Fiona Kerr

Founder and CEO at the NeuroTech Institute

Dr. LaDon Jones

Academic Director for the Graduate Program in Health Administration at National University

Moderator: Rita Altman

VTI Board Member, Sunrise Advisor, Memory Care at Sunrise Senior Living

3:30-4:00 PM EST

Post Conference Mixer/Happy Hour

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