Research Institute for Aging
Research Institute for Aging


Home 9 Events 9 Creating Dementia-Friendly and Inclusive Spaces

Creating Dementia-Friendly and Inclusive Spaces

Where: 250 Laurelwood Drive, Building 4, Waterloo, ON, N2J 0E2

When: Saturday January 20 - Sunday January 21, 2024

Time: 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. EST

Cost: Free (Registration Required)

Your space might not be as inclusive or welcoming as you think, particularly for people living with dementia.

Dim lighting, narrow doorways, loud music, overcrowding, lack of signage, poor communication, and uncomfortable seating are just a few factors that can contribute to unwelcoming spaces.

Addressing these obstacles and fostering dementia-friendly environments can ensure people of all ages, abilities, backgrounds, and needs can actively participate and connect within their community.

Are you a local business, community organization, or post-secondary student interested in creating spaces that are dementia-friendly and inviting for everyone?

Join us! Register for the Creating Dementia-Friendly and Inclusive Spaces case competition.

Taking place January 20-21, 2024, this free event gives attendees a chance to receive a micro-grant or honorarium for their participation. This year’s theme focuses on establishing a supportive and welcoming community for older adults and people living with dementia.

Event details

Date: Saturday, January 20, 2024, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., and Sunday, January 21, 2024, 9 a.m. – noon.
Location: Discovery Hall, Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging, 250 Laurelwood Drive, Waterloo, ON, N2J0E2

Get involved

The Creating Dementia-Friendly and Inclusive Spaces case competition centers around collaborative problem-solving for real-world challenges. Post-secondary students, local business, and community organizations will work together to develop practical solutions to these challenges and help build inclusive, dementia-friendly spaces.

Businesses and organizations

Businesses and organizations based in Waterloo Region are invited to submit a proposal outlining the difficulties they encounter when creating spaces that are welcoming and dementia-friendly for older adults. Registration is now closed. 

Reasons to participate:

  • opportunity to apply for a micro-grant ($1,000 – $5,000) after the event to implement strategies developed during the event.
  • attend an educational session led by the Alzheimer Society of Waterloo Wellington about how to create dementia-friendly spaces.
  • gain an awareness and understanding of how creating spaces that are dementia-friendly can positively impact the experience for people visiting your business or organization.

Looking for some ideas about obstacles encountered by businesses and community organizations when building inclusive and dementia-friendly spaces, read this checklist.

Post-secondary students

Post-secondary students interested in creating welcoming and dementia-friendly spaces, and working with local businesses and organizations to address these challenges are encouraged to register. Students can register for free as a team (maximum of 4 people) or individually.

Student registration is now full. If you would like to be added to the waitlist, please email:

Reasons to participate:

  • opportunity to be involved with the post-event implementation.
  • gain an understanding of design thinking process.
  • chance to network with various businesses and organizations.
  • chance to receive a $500 honorarium for the top team.
Organizer Information

Supporting Inclusion through Intergenerational Partnerships

Email Address:

Phone Number: 519-904-0660

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