Time to brew up for Alzheimer’s

Annual Coffee Break helps raise funds for Alzheimer support

This September, if someone you care about is living with Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia, show your support by taking part in a Coffee Break event in your community.

Coffee Break is the largest annual nation-wide fundraising campaign of the Alzheimer Society that raises money for local programs and services.

Kicking off in B.C. on Sept. 21, this do-it-yourself fundraiser is fun and easy. It can be as simple as hosting a coffee party at home, in the office or at a public venue. Prospective Coffee Break hosts will receive a host kit to help with their event. Supporters can also purchase coffee cup cut-outs from this year’s sponsor, Bulk Barn, at various locations in Kamloops, Kelowna, Vernon and Cranbrook. The Bulk Barn head office and the store where the cut-out was sold will match every donation made on Sept. 21. The target goal for this year’s fundraising campaign is $1.5 million dollars across the country.

“Increased funding for services is essential to meet the needs of the growing numbers of Canadians living with dementia,” says Jean Blake, CEO of the Alzheimer Society of B.C.  “Having access to services can make all the difference in the way families live with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias.”

Dementia is a significant health issue in Canada; the World Health Organization called it a “ticking time bomb” in its recent report, Dementia: A Public Health Priority.  Dementia affects more than 500,000 Canadians today and will rise to 1.1 million by 2038. Although the causes are unknown, older Canadians are at an increased risk. After 65, the risk for dementia doubles every five years, and according to Statistics Canada, as much as 38.5 per cent of B.C.’s population will be 65 and older by 2031.

Dementia’s steadily increasing numbers will also have a tremendous impact on B.C. caregivers who already spend 33.1 million hours per year caring for someone with dementia.

“Support groups for caregivers will be in even greater demand,” adds Blake. “They’re a safe place for caregivers to talk, share and form friendships, giving them the confidence and strength to continue caring for family members at home longer.

“But to keep these groups active, we need more funding. We’re encouraging British Columbians to get behind this Canada-wide Coffee Break appeal.”

To register and start planning your Coffee Break event, visit www.coffeebreakbc.ca.