Well into the social hour, a sleepy-eyed President Steve Day once again appeared on the Zoom call just back from his trip with the
family to London and Paris. He gave a quick summary of the gastronomical experience (good,
but so-so) and the highlights of tourist spots visited.
After the usual beginning with a reciting of the 4-Way Test (Roen), Pledge of Allegiance (Crane) and a Thought of the Day (Bradford)
with a salute from the complex Anthony Bourdain, the American chef and author, Steve recognized Sarah Huong and Rickie Jaminez
from the UCLA Rotaracts.
Then it was time for our Speaker of the Day.
Steve introduced Mary Michlovich, the Executive Director of OPICA. (What is an OPICA?)
Well, it stands for Optimistic People in a Caring Atmosphere. Its mission: To improve lives of
adults challenged by memory loss. As Steve pointed out, although OPICA has been in existence since 1984, Mary joined the
organization some 17 years ago and operates from Steiner Park in Santa Monica.
Aided by PowerPoint, Mary summarized the very meaningful objectives of OPICA.
- Provide meaningful and stimulative adult day programs for those suffering from various forms of memory loss. They also assist the caregivers for these qualified adults.
- Provide a Counseling Center (both individual and support groups) which furnishes counseling programs for high functioning clients.
- Community Connection services in education, resources, and professional training.
For those qualifying for Respite Comparative programs, services such as socialization, engagement, meds management, spiritual programs and family support are offered to individuals. These programs run from on-line services, private caregivers to assisted living and skilled nursing care.
Mary delved into greater detail with respect to the benefits of OPICA’s programs. The adult day care stresses the engagement and socialization benefit of memory loss clients. The exercise program aspects help overcome depression, wandering, balance and coordination and cognitive improvements. The art program is highly successful which features brain stimulation, sense of achievement, physical strength and enhances mood normality. The music program improves behavior, communication, mood, and memory stimulation.
Mary reviewed the Adult Day Program and its benefits once again. However, this program has collaborated with UCLA and the State Department of Aging, thus expanding the various positive aspects of its experience and techniques for adult memory loss. Mary emphasized the upcoming Art Show on October 14th from 1 to 5 p.m. There will be live music, and features art from OPICA artists. The art will be for sale. In response to a question, Mary also pointed out the Steve Lopez of the LA Times came for an hour’s visit and spent the day. He featured OPICA in his column.