WOLFVILLE – Wolfville’s Walk for Alzheimer’s drew over fifty people this year to walk, support and remember those who’ve been touched by Alzheimer’s and dementia.
The event drew people from all over the Annapolis Valley and, with the help of several members of the Alzheimer Society and volunteers from the Royal Bank of Canada, raised funds and awareness for those who are experiencing the disease.
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People like Jocelyne Plaurde, who received the award for most funds and participation raised, who participated in the day’s walk along with her partner, Gerard Tremblay and friends Lorraine and Gerard Doyle as her daughter also walked for the cause in Italy.
“We’re here to support the cause and have a good time,” said Plaurde.
Pat Miller, the society’s Coordinator of Education and Outreach for the Annapolis Valley, was also present and described how the funds raised stay in the region and go towards supporting those with the disease, their caregivers, families and anyone else affected by it through support programs, education, services and direct aid.
Support is offered to anyone from Windsor to Annapolis Royal, as well as health professionals who need to know more about the disease, said Miller, who attended the walk surrounded by many friends.
“Today is also an opportunity to meet together and encourage each other. It brings hope,” she said.
Also present was Mark Sharkey, the society’s Coordinator of Community Giving, who said the event is also important because it brings people together to remember those who’ve passed from the disease and support those still living with it through exercise – one of the best ways to fight against it.
“Exercise is one of the best tools to improve brain health, whether before you are diagnosed or after,” he said.
Sharkey also discussed another objective for this year’s walks – erasing stigma surrounding those living with dementia.
“Many people living with dementia are able to live independently, for longer and longer, and we’re using our walks across the country to try and help erase the stigma they face,” he said.