JFS
The special guest for the event will be actress Kimberly Williams-Paisley, perhaps best known for her role in the film "Father of the Bride."

The special guest for the event will be actress Kimberly Williams-Paisley, perhaps best known for her role in the film Father of the Bride.

On April 6, Jewish Family Service (JFS) will hold its annual Spotlight fundraiser event virtually. It will focus on older adults.

The special guest for the event will be actress Kimberly Williams-Paisley, perhaps best known for her role in the film Father of the Bride.

The event will center around Williams-Paisley’s book, Where the Light Gets In: Losing My Mother Only to Find Her Again. The book tells the story of her mother, Linda, following her battle with Primary Progressive Aphasia, a form of dementia where language capabilities become progressively impaired, from her diagnosis up until her death. The book shares the family’s journey in an effort to help others who are on the same path.

A virtual book club discussion of Williams-Paisley’s book took place on March 10, moderated by Lynn Breuer, JFS’ director of community outreach and wellness.

Breuer believes many experiences touched upon in the book relate to what many members of the community reach out to JFS for and what JFS can assist with.

“The reality is there’s a lot of older adults struggling with cognitive impairment and dementia in our local Jewish community, and their families want to do their very best to help them,” Breuer said. “But it’s so very challenging to navigate your way through what sounds good on paper versus what can make a tangible difference that somebody feels in their lives.”

One common experience in Williams-Paisley’s book, Breuer explains, is the dilemma of how to approach a loved one when it’s no longer safe for them to drive.

Focus on JFS Options

Other topics in the book cover the stigma of dementia, being a long-distance caregiver and caregiver stress.

“Kimberly’s book shines a light on all the challenges, how you can love someone so fully and want to do all the right things and still feel so in over your head with some of these potential crisis points,” Breuer said.

“Kimberly shines the spotlight on that, and we have services at JFS to help people and families go through that.”

Even though the issues that the book and topic consist of can be uncomfortable, Breuer hopes the event helps people take proper steps.

“I hope people start feeling comfortable having conversations about when our cognitive abilities change,” she said. “I hope people understand the type of help available and feel comfortable reaching out for help.” 

The virtual event takes place at 7 p.m. April 6, and admission is $36. For tickets and sponsorship information, visit jfsspotlightevent.org, call (248) 592-2339 or email
giving@jfsdetroit.org.

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