Offering care to those with dementia and their caregivers.


The ABIDE Respite Ministry is designed to provide a safe haven of friendship and fun for its participants as well as a rejuvenating break for the caregiver in actively engaging those affected by Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.


Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. in the Oak Street Center

Program Activities Include:

Music and Pet Therapy
Chair Exercise
Arts and Crafts
Intergenerational Activities
Service Projects

Have questions? Contact Us


“Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.”

John 15:4-5 ESV

Schedule of a Typical Day

  • 10am - 10:15am: Arrival, Socialization
  • 10:15am - 11:15am: Brain Fitness (trivia, brainstorming, creative writing)
  • 11:15am - 11:30am: Physical Fitness (movement, stretching, chair exercises)
  • 11:30am - 12pm: Music, art, or hand- eye coordination activities
  • 12pm - 12:45pm: Family-style meal (lunch & dessert)
  • 12:45pm - 1:15pm: Physical Activity (balloon volleyball, bowling)
  • 1:15pm - 2pm: Brain Stimulation followed by music

Mission Statement 

To provide an adult respite program for those with dementia modeling the companionship of Christ and the community of friends. Through joyful social interactions, participants will feel loved, connected, and valued. Through respite and a monthly caregiver support group, caregivers will feel restored, connected, and understood.

Vision Statement

To provide joy, hope, dignity, and quality
care to persons with dementia, as well as their caregivers.


More to the Story with Staley: Battling Dementia

Dave Staley was here to do a piece about our amazing ABIDE Respite Ministry. The segment is called "More to the Story" and highlights good things happening in Chattanooga.

Pat Summit Foundation Grant

We are so excited to announce that we have received a grant of $5,000 from the Pat Summit Foundation! Pat and Tyler Summit founded the Pat Summit Foundation to help find a cure for Alzheimer's so that one day no family has to hear that a loved one has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease.

Volunteer Information

Volunteers are the heartbeat of the ABIDE ministry. Volunteers are paired with participants. Volunteers don’t need to have any previous training in Alzheimer’s or health care, just willing hearts. You are simply needed to guide, interact, and engage with the participants. Everything you need to know is taught in training sessions.


  1.  Safe Sanctuary Training (online policy available)
  2. Respite for All Volunteer Training (online training available)
  3. Background Check (provided by FCUMC)

Flexible Commitment

We know your time is valuable and understand you may not be able to
commit to every Tuesday or Thursday; however, we need a deep pool
of volunteers to draw on. We will accommodate your schedule as we
work together to assure a seamless and joyful day.

Volunteer Covenant (excerpt)

  • I will treat all with dignity and respect and will not discuss individuals or events that occur at ABIDE outside of the respite team, giving our friends the respect that we would want in return.
  • I will arrive on time to ABIDE because someone is needed at every table to welcome and carry the conversation when our friends arrive! 
  • I will respond promptly to volunteer emails if I plan to attend and always let the director know promptly if I cannot make it to my committed time.
  • I will be on the lookout for speakers, programs, and musical talent that I can bring to share with our friends. The director WELCOMES any suggestions for entertainment or continued learning. 

Participant Information

Participant Requirements

Admission Criteria - to be considered for the ABIDE ministry, an individual must be able to:
  • Ambulate on his or her own (assistive devices such as walkers or canes are welcomed)
  • Eat without assistance
  • Manage his or her own bathroom needs (absorbent briefs are welcomed)
  • Interact and engage with others (with encouragement and prompting) in a group setting

Care for the loved ones

  • The ABIDE team and volunteers provide supervision and lead activities with the dignity and respect every person deserves.
  • Participants socialize, are served a nutritious lunch, and enjoy a variety of life-enriching activities such as music, pet therapy, exercise, arts & crafts, and service projects.
  • Participants may attend one or more days each week or month, offering flexibility that many participants require.
  • Caregivers who take the time to care for themselves are better able to manage the stresses of caring for loved ones.
  • Participants may attend one or more days each week or month, offering flexibility that many participants require.

Meet The Team

Brandi Anderson


Brandi Anderson


Brandi Anderson has been the director of ABIDE Respite Ministries since 2023. Before joining First-Centenary, Brandi was an elementary educator for 12 years where she taught both P.E. and Art to children ages 5-12 years old. Originally from south of Atlanta, Brandi and her husband resided in Orlando, Florida for many years prior to moving to Chattanooga. Brandi's passion is to serve those around her which is why she loves her job! She has personal experience with people living with dementia within her own family and understands how important this ministry is and why she is passionate about helping it grow.

Brandi has a wonderful husband of 11 years, a 2 year old niece that she nicknamed "Dudley" and two animals that she adores: Forrest the beagle and Oli the cat. In her spare time, Brandi enjoys movies, reading books, sculpting, painting, drawing, watching the Atlanta Braves and rooting for her favorite team, the Georgia Bulldawgs!