Slide Annual Memory Bridge Retreat at TMBCC

Each summer Memory Bridge invites 12 participants from around the world to join us for our annual summer Training Retreat in Bloomington, Indiana. The retreat is held at the Tibetan-Mongolian Cultural Center. We cover all of the expenses of the selected participants, except for travel. Applications are open to all who share their lives, professionally or personally, with one or more persons with dementia. Previous participants include CNAs, therapists of all kinds (e.g., art, music, and occupational) activity directors, social workers, nurses, chaplains, medical students, artists, teachers, residential and home healthcare administrators, and family carers.

Memory Bridge Foundation for Dementia Annual Retreat

The Retreat is based on our “I Am a Bridge” training that positions people with dementia in the roles of teacher, guide, and companion. The central experience of the five-day retreat is the daily meetings with the elders with dementia who live in a nearby residential community and participate in the program.

 

In addition to the one-to-one and group visits with people with dementia, the experience incorporates presentations, facilitated discussions, videos, literature, extensive reflection, yoga, daily meditation, and many hours of informal conversations with the other participants.

The Tibetan Mongolian Buddhist Cultural Center  is situated on over a hundred peaceful and meditative acres in Bloomington, Indiana. In addition to educational and retreat facilities, a Buddhist Monastery and the only traditional Tibetan Stupas in the U.S. are located on the property.

Interested in Participating? 

Applications for the 2024 Retreat are now closed. If you are interested in receiving information about the 2025 Retreat, please let us know by filling out the contact information below.

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Annual Retreat Inquiry

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While our retreat schedule each year varies, we’ve developed a densely packed 5 days in Bloomington. Click below to see what we’ve done in years past.

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Day 1

2:00 – 4:00pm Arrival and Check-in
5:00 – 6:00pm Welcoming Meal
6:00 – 8:00pm Opening Circle
8:00 – 9:00pm Introducing the Journey

Day 2

6:30 – 7:15am Morning Meditation
8:00 – 9:00am Breakfast
9:00 – 10:30am Presentation: Listening Deeply in a Flat World
11:00 – Noon Meeting Our Buddies (Buddy Bios)
Noon – 1:00pm Lunch
1:00 – 2:30pm 1st Buddy Visit – Autumn Hills Alzheimer’s Center
2:30 – 4:30pm Relax and Reflection
4:30 – 6:00pm Sharing our Buddy Visit
6:00 – 7:00pm Evening Meal
7:00 – 9:00pm Presentation: “Love is not Normal”
9:00 – 9:30pm Evening Wind-down

Day 3

6:30 – 7:15am Morning Meditation
8:00 – 9:00am Breakfast
9:30 – 10:30am 2nd Buddy Visit
10:30 – Noon Break
Noon – 1:00pm Lunch
1:00 – 2:30pm Sharing Our Buddy Visit
2:30 – 4:00pm Relection and Relaxation
4:00 – 6:00pm Creating I-Land Maps
6:00 – 7:00pm Evening Meal
7:00 – 9:00pm Discussion: The Death of Ivan Ilyich, Leo Tolstoy
9:00 – 9:30pm Evening Wind-down

Day 4

6:30 – 7:15am Morning Meditation
8:00 – 9:00am Breakfast
9:30 – 10:30am 3rd Buddy Visit
10:30 – Noon Break
Noon – 1:30pm Lunch/Complete I-Land Maps, if needed
1:30 – 3:30pm Presentation: Being With Care (with mid-way break)
3:30 – 5:30pm Sharing Our I-Land Maps
6:00 – 8:00pm Evening Meal (in town)
8:00 – 9:30pm Drumming

Day 5

6:30 – 7:30am Morning Meditation
8:00 – 9:00am Breakfast
9:30 – 11:30am 4th Buddy Visit (with drums)
11:30 – Noon Break
Noon – 1:00pm Lunch
1:00 – 2:30pm Reflection on Bridging
2:30 – 4:30pm Sharing Our Bridging Ideas
4:30 – 6:00pm Rest
6:00 – 7:00pm Evening Meal
7:00 – 9:00pm Presentation: Over and Under and Back From Whence you Came
9:00 – 9:30pm Evening Wind-down

Day 6

6:30 – 7:15am Morning Meditation
8:00 – 8:45am Breakfast
9:30 – 10:15am Final Buddy Visit
10:30 – 12:45pm Sharing Our Experiences and Closing Circle
1:00 – 2:00pm Lunch
2:00pm Departure

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Retreat Setting

Home to the wooded, historic campus of Indiana University, Bloomington is located an hour’s drive south of Indianapolis in the rolling hills of south central Indiana. The Visit Bloomington website offers information about the City’s many cultural arts and culinary attractions, as well as opportunities to enjoy the natural beauty of its surroundings.

Retreat participants are housed in cottages and in rooms in the Cultural Center. Information about accommodations is provided on the Center’s website. The cost of housing and meals at the Center will be covered by the scholarship. Scholarship recipients will receive instructions as to how to make housing arrangements with the Center. It is not necessary to make a reservation prior to that point.

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