Good practices



Care4Dem was a project that aimed to develop an innovative model to support informal caregivers of people with dementia, through support groups delivered online.

And why the aim of developing web-based support groups for informal carers? These groups work as a peer support intervention, which gives the opportunity to individuals who have experienced similar challenging situations to share their knowledge, experience, perceptions and even emotions. This type of support is very well appreciated by informal carers, recommended by health professionals and validated (in terms of positive results) by academic research.

Taking this into consideration, the objectives of Care4Dem initiative were to:

  • Enhance the carer’s satisfaction with care and reduce the risk of burn-out;
  • Trigger the development of support groups for carers, building on facilitators’ training.

Year(s): 2017 - 2020

Target group(s): Health care and social work professionals; informal carers

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To reach the objectives of the initiative, the partnership put its effort to identify the facilitator’s competence profile which should be suitable for the designed model of support groups; developed a multi-media course for support groups’ facilitators; implemented the online support groups; and aimed to create a network of professionals across the EU working towards improving the support offered to informal carers

Type of product

Online resource Course / Training

Brief description of the outcomes

During the project lifetime, the partnership was committed to develop a set of resources that are still available, namely: a training for facilitators, with 8 modules focused on providing/improve knowledge about dementia condition and the effective role of facilitators in an online support group, and an online platform that was built with Moodle and where participants can have access to a forum for sharing experiences and to a link for a Skype group.

Impact on target groups / Transferability potential

There were 4 pilot courses delivered, 36 facilitators certified and a very good evaluation of the training course (e.g. “Realistic content and well-chosen practical examples”).

The piloting test of the online support groups was implemented in Portugal, Italy and Romania, with a total of 90 people registered, 35 effective participants, divided in 7 groups. According to the evaluation results, it was possible to conclude that all participants were satisfied with their experience in the online support groups, and 93% considered that this resource helped them understand the importance of taking care of their own health and wellbeing, and also to understand the relationship between stress and their role in taking care (informally) of someone.


Country: Italy

Languages available: English Italian Portuguese Romanian

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