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Efforts to raise cash for Alzheimer’s commendable

Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia have the potential to touch nearly every person’s life, as over 5 million Americans live with Alzheimer’s, with a projected increase to nearly 14 million by 2050.

To bring these numbers into sharper focus, the report breaks it down further: One in three older adults dies with Alzheimer’s or another type of dementia and deaths from Alzheimer’s have increased 146% between 2000 and 2018.

Further illustrating the substantial individual and societal impact of the disease, the report states that over 16 million Americans provide an estimated 18.6 billion hours of unpaid care for those with Alzheime’s or other dementias, while around half of primary care physicians “believe that the medical profession is not ready for the growing number of people with Alzheimer’s or other dementias.”

Despite decades of efforts by physicians, researchers and advocates, there is still no cure for this neurodegenerative disease and it continues to have devastating effects on individuals, families, communities and society as a whole.

Due to this, the Alzheimer’s Association and its chapters around the nation annually hold the Walk to End Alzheimer’s fundraiser in around 600 communities, making it the “world’s largest event to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer’s care, support and research,” the Walk to End Alzheimer’s website states.

While the local walk is still about six months away, organizations and businesses in the area are already preparing, as once a person registers as an individual or for a team, they can begin raising funds and awareness in advance of the walk itself, according to organizers.

One example of this could be found at Mill Creek Senior Living Community in Marquette on Tuesday, where residents, employees and resident family members prepared a variety of treats to hold a fundraising bake sale for the local walk.

It’s one of a series of events that Mill Creek holds throughout the year to raise funds for the walk, as it already hosted a craft show in January in support of the cause. Between these two events, nearly $1,000 of the $5,000 goal has been raised, according to Thursday’s Mining Journal article about the fundraiser.

“More and more people are diagnosed with either dementia and/or Alzheimer’s every year and it’s affecting more people. Chances are you know somebody who is affected by it, touched by it or whatever,” Brenda Alexander, an assistant administrator at Mill Creek Senior Living Community said in the article. “And I know it’s something close to our heart because (of) our residents, including our memory care unit.”

We commend Mill Creek and all of the other organizations, businesses, and individuals that are working hard to raise funds for a disease that touches so many lives, as supporting care, support, and research for dementia are critical in light of its devastating impacts and complex nature.

We also commend the Alzheimer’s Association at the local and national levels for its leadership on a serious issue, as the nonprofit provides key resources to those who are impacted, as well as advocacy and fundraising platforms to help continue the fight to end Alzheimer’s.

To learn more about the Walk to End Alzheimer’s in Marquette, which will be held Sept. 19, visit: https://act.alz.org/site/TR/Walk2020/MI-GreaterMichigan?pg=entry&fr_id=13518

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