Provide occupation and meaning to life

The idea: The challenge for caregivers of persons with dementia to not let occupation be lost. Monica, an occupational therapist, was inspired to create activities that give meaning.


My name is Monica Heltemes.  I am an occupational therapist in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  I have a great passion for helping persons with dementia and their care-partners to be as successful as possible along their journey.  
Occupation, or doing things, gives meaning to life. It is a basic human need. For persons with dementia, they slowly lose the occupations, or daily activities, that they normally would do.  It is the challenge for caregivers of persons with dementia to not let occupation be lost.  
To this end, I started a company in 2010, MindStart - Activities for Persons with Memory Loss.  The items we carry, such as games and puzzles, were designed by me based on research, consults with experts, and actual trials with persons with dementia.  It is our mission to improve the quality of life for persons with dementia and their care-partners by providing unique activity products.  Thus, persons with dementia can stay active, cognitively stimulated, and engaged, even as their condition deteriorates.
It may take effort at times, but occupation helps to preserve meaning to their life - and the person with dementia still does have meaning to their life.
Enjoy the moment!
Monica Heltemes, OTR/L
Published on 07 September 2011
Email:Email the author


Activities for persons with dementia

Hello Aileen,

You can find books and activities at

provide occupation and meaning of life

please tell me where i can purchase books as i have a friend who is not intrested in any activies that i suggest except related to getting outdoors which is a summer thing {haha].she shys away from any talk of families in case they dont visit.

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