The Alzheimer’s Association recently awarded funding to the College of Applied Sciences and Arts Department of Health Science and Recreation Associate Professor Dr. Van Ta Park for $150,000 over the next three years to develop a culturally-tailored program to reduce stress and depression among Vietnamese dementia caregivers.
William Fisher, the CEO of the Northern California and Northern Nevada Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association, presented Dr. Ta Park with the grant check on February 19, 2016. Only the top eight percent of proposals receive funding.
Through prior research, Dr. Ta Park found that Vietnamese Americans are less likely to utilize mental health services and family caregivers caring for a family member with dementia increase their risk of depression and stress.
Dr. Ta Park is developing a face-to-face, four week cognitive behavioral skill training program that will meet at the homes of Vietnamese caregivers in small groups with up to six caregivers at a time.
Participants will be recruited through community organizations that serve local Vietnamese residents and will be divided into two groups. One group will receive existing resources from the Alzheimer’s Association website that have been translated from English into Vietnamese and the other group will receive newly developed resources that have been created specifically for the program. Outcomes of the two groups will be compared using pre- and post-test measures of stress and depression.
Dr. Ta Park will be working with her mentors, Dr. Dolores Gallagher-Thompson and Dr. Gwen Yeo from Stanford University, School of Medicine, and has recruited bilingual and bicultural Vietnamese SJSU students to be research assistants.