Connections | The Gateway Family YMCA


Early intervention program for individuals with early-stage Dementia or mild cognitive impairment.

The Gateway Family YMCA’s Connections is an innovative program of support to those individuals diagnosed with Early-Stage dementia or Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI). Combining health and wellness opportunities with mutual support among members in the program, the goal is to slow the progression of the disease and keep members engaged in the community.

Brain & Body

Research clearly shows that individuals diagnosed with early-stage dementia can slow their physical, mental, and psychological decline by actively participating in regular exercise programs. With that in mind, Connections offers the following opportunities:

  • Ongoing one to one support from certified fitness specialists
  • Twice weekly cardio and strength training exercises
  • Weekly exercises focusing on balance and flexibility
  • Opportunities to engage in Y programs such as yoga, Zumba®, Tai Chi, and meditation


Cognition & Creativity

Another important component in cognitive health and wellness is regular involvement in opportunities that use the brain, often in unique and imaginative ways. These include:

  • Twice monthly arts programs provided by creative arts specialists. These include sessions on journaling, drama, poetry, painting, music, and movement
  • Cognitively stimulating games, puzzles, discussions, and other activities presented at each session
  • Educational events on topics including legal and financial planning, healthy living, medication use, home safety, community resources, clinical trials and advances in research Trips to local museums, historic locations, restaurants, outdoor centers and other cultural locales

Possibly the most important element of the Connections program is the chance to join with others who are experiencing the same challenges. Connections provide:

  • Mutual support group at each session facilitated by our Program Social Worker
  • Ongoing social work services for members and care partners
  • Special education and support programs for care partners
  • Opportunities for socialization and just plain fun for members and care partners
The Gateway Family YMCA