SOPHIA, W. Va. (WVVA) - More than 39,000 West Virginians live with dementia. First, responders in Sophia are getting specialized training to work with these individuals.
This situational awareness training aims to help first responders identify the signs of dementia and give them the tools and education needed to help individuals impacted by this disease.
JT Hunter is the co-owner of Equipped, Empowered, and Enabled who is leading the training.
He said there are few resources for first responders on how to help these individuals. They wanted to give them the skills to be successful in these situations.
"It's a lot deeper than just knowing to be patient, to be calm, that they're right, we're wrong, we need the actual tools to maneuver from," said Hunter. "We wanted to be one of the first to really give them what they need, when they're alone, and it's going down that they're confident and able to have a positive outcome."
Hunter said they are hoping to collaborate with more departments throughout the state to provide this training.