ASK PETER: All You Would Like to Know About Senior Care, Dementia, and Alzheimer's Care

Let's Walk to End Alzheimer's

By Peter DiMaria

This weekend Home Helpers Home Care will be participating in the Walk to End Alzheimer’s in Enfield

This is the major event in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease here and in other 600 cities across America. You may help just by going to the Enfield Senior Center next Sunday, September 25th, and walking with us to help the fight against this terrible disease. The walk is carried at a very slow pace through its 2 miles extension. It is a lot of fun, in spite of the serious subject involved. It is a place where you can find likeminded folks, people who are concerned with the disease for any reason and want to do something about it.

Another way to help is to consider making a donation to the Association. All funds raised through Walk to End Alzheimer's further the care, support and research efforts of the Alzheimer's Association. The Alzheimer's Association is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization. All donations are tax-deductible as allowed by law.

To participate in the walk, it is necessary to register, on the association website. They would like to know you’re walking with them and need every walker to sign a standard waiver through their official registration. There is no registration fee if you just want to walk. However, we ask every walker to make a personal donation and commit to raising funds in the fight against Alzheimer’s.

As you register, you may choose to walk individually or join one of the many teams organized by organizations, companies or families of Alzheimer’s patients. My company, Home Helpers, for example, is organizing a team of marchers for Sunday and any person is welcome to join us.

According to information available at the association’s website, every registered participant will receive a T-shirt after achieving the fundraising minimum of $100. Unless otherwise communicated, T-shirts will be available for pick up at the Senior Center on Sunday. Regardless of that, every participant receives a Promise Garden flower, in a color that represents their connection to the disease:

  • Blue represents someone with Alzheimer's or dementia
  • Purple is for someone who has lost a loved one to the disease.
  • Yellow represents someone who is currently supporting or caring for someone with Alzheimer’s.
  • Orange is for everyone who supports the cause and vision of a world without Alzheimer’s.

According to the association, strollers are welcome to participate, but for everyone’s safety, skateboards, bicycles, inline skates and wheelie footwear are discouraged. Well-behaved dogs are welcome but must be on a leash at all times. The owner will be responsible for disposing of waste properly.

The Walk is a rain or shine event. However, in the case of severe weather, it could be canceled. If this is the case, there will be an update on the Walk homepage on or before the morning of the event.

Finally, the association always needs volunteers to help with set-up, clean-up, registration, water stops, promise garden, the T-shirt tent and so much more. All interested volunteers should visit their volunteer page for more information about event day roles and responsibilities.

Alzheimer’s and you

Alzheimer’s disease is a terrible condition that slowly destroys the brain, ultimately changing who we are and challenging our relationship with those we love and care for. Until today, little scientific progress has been achieved against it.

More than 5 million Americans are currently living with Alzheimer’s disease, according to the CDC (Center for Disease Control). It is estimated that this number will be three times as high, by 2050. One in every three seniors dies with Alzheimer’s or another type of dementia.

Every 66 seconds, someone in the United States develops Alzheimer's Disease

Alzheimer’s has a huge burden on families. It is estimated that in 2015 more than 15 million people were taking care of a family member, providing over 18.1 billion hours of unpaid care. Alzheimer's disease is known for placing a great burden on caregivers which include social, psychological, physical or economic aspects.

Most people don’t think about Alzheimer’s in their daily life unless they have a relative affected. Even more, nobody wants to consider that they or someone they love might, some day, suffer from it. I want to invite you to stop for a moment and consider the possibility. Doesn’t it feel terrible? It is, indeed, terrifying. Our future is at risk unless we can find a way to change the course of this disease.

It doesn’t have to be like that. Take, for example, the ice bucket challenge, a phenomenon in the summer of 2014 in which people dunked a bucket of iced water over their heads in order to solicit donations before nominating others to do the same. The campaign raised more than $100m in a 30-day period and was able to fully fund a number of research projects.

One of these was Project MinE, a large data-driven initiative funded by the ALS Association, through ice bucket challenge donations, as well as donations from the organization’s Georgia and New York chapters. The project’s researchers announced recently that they have identified a new gene associated with the disease, which experts say could lead to new treatment possibilities.

Now, just think if we could do the same with Alzheimer’s? That’s exactly the objective of the Walk to End Alzheimer’s. Over the past decades, the Alzheimers Association has used the walk’s success to raise funds to finance research that could lead to the cure of Alzheimer’s. Currently, the association provides more than $350 million to over 2,300 scientific proposals in renowned institutions.

At the moment I published this blog post, the Alzheimer’s Association website showed that our community had 74 teams and over 300 participants registered to Walk at the Senior Center. Over $ 42,000.00 had been raised, of the Association’s CT chapter objective of $ 98,602.00. But we can do better than that, right? So join us this Sunday!

Event Info:

Sunday, Sep, 25
Registration at 9:00 am
Walk & Ceremony at 10:00 am
Walk Ends at 12:00 pm
Route Length: 2 miles

Location:
Enfield Senior Center
299 Elm Street
Enfield, CT 06082

Free Parking.

Contact:
Walk Help CT
860-828-2828
ctwalkhelp@alz.org
Website: act.alz.org