Learn More About the NCCA Creative Caregiving Initiative

NCCA Creative Caregiving Initiative Partners 

Using the Guide 

About the Creative Caregiving Process

About the Larger NCCA Creative Caregiving Initiative© (take out and any associated links)

About the Impact of Creativity and Care

About NCCA Creative Caregiving Design Team 


NCCA Creative Caregiving Initiative Partners 

NCCA is grateful for the vision and continued support from visionary organizations who recognized the need and opportunities to support family and professional caregivers of adults who live with Alzheimer’s Disease and related cognitive disorders. Click on each logo to learn more about their vital work.

Bader Logo v2gilbert_logo 


Using the Guide 

  • Log-In to the nearest computer, tablet or phone;
  • Take a Moment for Self-Care using Care for the Caregiver,
  • Hover over, then click on a Lesson to dive on in or review a step-by-step video lesson with written prompts to learn the process,
  • When you are ready, enjoy the creative lesson with your care partner during the course of your daily activity. You can use the video lesson to guide you both, stopping it along the way. Or you can make notes and do the activity on your own.
  • Adapt the lesson with your care partner to include your favorite songs, rhythms, art, poetry, movement, and music.
  • Check back often as new lessons are continually being added, including lessons in Spanish.
  • If you choose, you can also report out using special tools to capture and expand your experience.  


About the Creative Caregiving Process

Caregivers log-in, create a user profile and then enter a learning environment filled with short video lessons that guide users through hands-on learning experiences, from paintings and printmaking to poetry and movement. The guide is constantly expanding with lessons for additional languages and cultures. So check back often.

Each lesson provides video, narration, images, and text. When ready, set up a time (10-30 minutes) and a place to engage in the lesson with your care partner. You can follow the lesson with your care partner or make notes and adapt it on your own.

Every lesson is designed as a starting place for exploration. Add favorite and familiar music, images, movements, dance, poetry, and stories. Familiarity promotes comfort and engagement.

The guide tracks progress and provides a way to give feedback at the end of each lesson. In the months ahead the expanding guide will allow you to upload experiences to a cloud gallery of caregiving snapshots that can be shared with others around the world.  


About the Impact of Creativity and Care  

Over the past two decades, evidence-based research has demonstrated that the arts improve health, and enhance quality of life for both aging adults AND their caregivers.  Significantly, this increase in quality of life is accomplished while mitigating long-term depression and anxiety related to chronic conditions, reducing healthcare costs, and strengthening networks of care.

While the majority of individuals will at some point experience challenging caregiving circumstances, research of the NCCA Creative Caregiving Initiative identifies the lack of readily accessible interventions to provide respite and renewal for caregivers.  The NCCA Creative Caregiving Initiative addresses these core needs, providing FREE, accessible, best-practice creative caregiving interventions for use by family and professional caregivers. 

A clear and urgent need exists for effective interventions serving older adults living with Alzheimer’s and related cognitive disorders alongside those who provide their care—in communities across the country and around the world. Locally, nationally, and globally we are experiencing attendant implications for social and healthcare systems as the number of caregivers for older adults rises with enormous emotional, physical, and financial challenges placed upon spouses, relatives, and friends.

Currently, the fastest growing percentage of the US population is comprised of older adults over the age of 85. More than 5.4 million Americans live with Alzheimer’s disease – and the number of individuals living with Alzheimer’s disease alone doubles with each five-year interval after the age of 65. And the statistics are echoed around globe. Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI) reports more than 46.8 million adults are living with dementia in 2015 and estimates that there will be in excess of 131.5 million individuals living with Alzheimer’s Disease and other related cognitive disorders by 2050.


About NCCA Creative Caregiving Design Team

NCCA Master Teaching Artists

Gary Glazner | Alzheimer’s Poetry Project 
Maria Genné | Kairos Dance Alive!
Laurel Humble | Meet Me: The MoMA Alzheimer’s Project
Judith-Kate Friedman | Songwriting Works
Anne Basting | TimeSlips Creative Storytelling
Elizabeth “Like” Lokon | Opening Minds through Art, Scripps Gerontology Center, Miami University
Jorge Merced | Pregones Theatre Teatro Pregones Puerto Rican Traveling Theater

Videography and Editing

Pilot Video segments created with the support of Miami University and
The Scripps Gerontology Center at Miami University

Elizabeth “Like” Lokon and Michael DeGrazier


The National Center for Creative Aging

Jennie Smith-Peers | Executive Director

Additional Support

Michael DeGrazier | Videographer, Editor, Producer

Special Thanks

Earthling Interactive | Web Platform Design
Square Axis | Web Platform Design

And gratitude for the seminal work of

Dr. Gene Cohen, Founding Director of the National Institute on Mental Health and the National Institute on Aging. Founding NCCA Board Member, and

Dr. Martin Seligman for allowing NCCA to cite aligned concepts developed in his book Flourish.

The NCCA Creative Caregiving Guide is a work in progress. We continually listen to feedback from the thousands of caregivers who use this guide.