Annual fundraising walk for Alzheimer's and dementia expands to Napanee
According to the Alzheimer’s Society of Canada, more than 564,000 people were living with Alzheimer’s or some other type of dementia in 2016. That number is expected to reach one million by 2031.
Walks are being held across Canada this month to raise money for research and programming.
On Saturday May 26, Napanee had its first ever walk and on Sunday it was Kingston’s turn to hit the pavement and spread awareness for a disease that affects thousands of people in the Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington region.
“It’s a 24/7 disease, you don’t get to go to bed at night and get a break for eight hours because it affects people in all different ways,” says KFL&A Alzheimer Society fundraising and volunteer coordinator Lesley Kimble.
Alzheimer’s is one of the fastest growing diseases in the country and there are still a lot of unknowns around the disease. What is known is that it affects both the person diagnosed and their families.
The Alzheimer Society of Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington’s goal is to give people the best life while living with dementia.
Executive director Vicki Poffley says, “A lot of our people that we support in the KFL&A are here today and still live in the community with their family, so these funds are critical to support those folks.”
Last year’s walk in Kingston raised $35,000, which was higher than their goal of $30,000. This year they came in with a goal of $40,000 for both events together. As of Sunday morning, before the Kingston walk started, the running total was at $37,000 thanks to the generosity of the Napanee community.
One of the places the money is going this year is the expansion of KFL&A services. This includes two new branches in Northbrook and Sharbot Lake over the last two months. Another new office is expected to open in Napanee in June.
Kimble says the new offices are extremely important for residents who have a hard time travelling.
“People can stay in their community and receive the programs and services that are so important and they don’t have to always come to Kingston for them.”