Orange Co. Named NC's First Dementia-Friendly Community

ORANGE COUNTY -- Orange County is North Carolina's first dementia-friendly community. 

The dementia-friendly businesses campaign starts with 10 local businesses that pledged to enhance support for people with dementia and their caregivers and improve quality of life and promote understanding and respect. 

Linnea Smith, wife of the late UNC Coach Dean Smith, who suffered from dementia, says campaigns like this are a great help to those in need.

"No family is immune from having a member develop this illness. And it's difficult, but there are resources. And this is an example, today, of the community rallying to provide more resources for families," said Linnea Smith.

The initiative was made possible by a $900,000 federal grant that will expand services for caregivers and people with Alzheimer’s and related dementias, including those with intellectual and developmental disabilities.