AAD Marks “Dementia Awareness Week”

September 17, 2015

Action on Alzheimer’s & Dementia [AAD] will mark Bermuda’s second “Dementia Awareness Week” next week, September 21–27.

The Bermuda-registered non-profit [charity # 929] is hosting a week-long series of public events and presentations to focus community attention on Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.

Kicking off Monday [Sept 21] on World Alzheimer’s Day, AAD will host screenings of acclaimed documentaries, a rum-tasting fundraiser, and free informational sessions about avoiding financial abuse and providing quality care, engaging activities, and quality of life for people living with dementia.

“Dementia is one of the most significant public health issues of our time and while it has enormous impact on healthcare systems and national budgets, it is equally important to recognize its detrimental effects on individuals and their families,” says Liz Stewart, AAD president. “Dementia, particularly Alzheimer’s, affects our whole community and it is a fast-growing concern.”

Action on Alzheimer’s & Dementia [AAD] is a registered charity in Bermuda dedicated to supporting people with dementia and advocating for quality care. Founded in 2012, AAD works to increase awareness and give much-needed support to people living with dementia.

Among its services, it provides free occupational therapy assessments, organises weekly activities, and works to coach medical professionals, caregivers, nursing homes and other health services in Bermuda about the best care and treatment practices for people with dementia.

An estimated 50-million people are living with dementia worldwide—close to 1,000 in Bermuda alone. About 13 percent of those aged 65 and older have Alzheimer’s disease, according to statistics. After age 65, the odds double about every five years—reaching 50 percent at 85. But the disease does not just affect the elderly; early onset Alzheimer’s can begin as young as 30.

Alzheimer’s is one of numerous types of dementia, and the most common. A progressive disease that destroys areas of the brain, it causes memory loss, confusion, and eventual loss of speech, understanding and movement. The disease has no cure, but studies indicate drugs can help alleviate symptoms.

Public events scheduled during Dementia Awareness Week include:

  • “Dementia A to Z,” free public presentation at BUEI, 6:30–8 pm, Monday, September 21;
  • “Mental Health & the Law,” free public presentation, with Keiva Maronie-Durham of Amicus Law, at BUEI, 6:30–8 pm, Tuesday, September 22;
  • Screening of The Genius of Marian at BUEI, 6:30 p.m., tickets $10, Thursday, September 24;
  • Bacardi rum-tasting fundraiser, Bermuda Society of Arts, City Hall, 6–8:30 p.m., Friday, September 25, tickets $50;
  • Screening of Grammy-winning and Academy-Award-nominated Glen Campbell: I’ll be Me, tickets $15, BUEI, 7 pm, Saturday, September 26.

“Our aim is to engage the whole Bermuda community, not just those touched in some way by Alzheimer’s and other dementias,” says Stewart. “Bermuda is sorely in need of stronger support, resources and policies on a national level to address the impact of this disease.”

For tickets or more information about AAD’s Dementia Awareness Week events, or its regular programmes, activities and resources, contact alzbermuda@yahoo.com or 707-0600. Follow AAD on Facebook and Twitter @aadbermuda.

Following Dementia Awareness Week, AAD will also be the beneficiary charity for the following weekend’s PartnerRe 5K Women’s Run & Walk, Sunday, Oct 4, at Botanical Gardens, Paget. To enter, go to www.racedayworld.com.

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