Putting Care on the Map

Project Info | The Exhibit | The Alzheimer's Alphabet

The Exhibit

Putting Care on the Map:
Portraits of Care and Caregiving across Canada
Ardra Cole and Maura McIntyre
Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto
The Exhibit:

Slide Show of Audience Participation

Putting Care on the Map is an eleven-part, mixed media installation based on our program of research on caregiving and Alzheimer’s disease. We invite you to take time and engage with each part of the exhibit. Through images, words, and objects we hope you will learn from family caregivers across Canada about what it means to care for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease.

The focus of our work is on understanding the emotional complexities of what it means to care for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease. Our broad purposes are to:

  • learn more about what care looks like to different people in different places across Canada;
  • educate the general public about Alzheimer’s disease and the complexities of caregiving;
  • provide community development and support for family caregivers;
  • inform health care policy and contribute to an ethic of dementia care; and,
  • pay tribute to family caregivers and the worthiness of care and caregiving in general.

We created the exhibit from information and material gathered in 2006 and 2007 through a cross-Canada survey and in-depth contact with family caregivers in three regions of the country–Halifax and rural Nova Scotia; Sudbury and the “near north” of central Ontario; Vancouver Island, the northern Gulf Islands and mainland British Columbia. With the help of local Alzheimer Society chapters, community outreach, and word-of-mouth contact we travelled to small towns and cities, rural communities, and out of the way places to visit and talk with family members caring for their loved ones at home and in long-term care facilities. The diversity of individuals, care circumstances and care relationships that we encountered was remarkable. We were honoured to be welcomed into people’s lives and to be invited into intimate worlds of care.

Each piece of Putting Care on the Map tells a story of the caregiving experience. We hope that you will take the story of caregiving forward and, in your own way, help us to PUT CARE ON THE MAP.

Funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada