Virtual walk lets Fernie residents make memories matter

Fernie caregivers are among the honourees for the Investors Group Virtual Walk for Alzheimer’s.

As many Fernie families know, dementia doesn’t just affect the person diagnosed.

Caregivers, family members and friends are also impacted, and caregiving is often required 24 hours each day, 365 days each year. It’s a hugely challenging responsibility — and one that requires a variety of support.

So it’s fitting that Fernie caregivers are among the honourees for the Investors Group Virtual Walk for Alzheimer’s. The innovative fundraising event for the non-profit Alzheimer Society of B.C. allows residents to get involved online.

All they have to do is visit Walkforalzheimers.ca and sign up for a Virtual Walk. Residents can then take a stroll with family and friends on Sunday, May 1 and collect pledges, or make a donation to the campaign.

The Virtual Walk is province-wide, and uses the theme “Make memories matter.”

“Memories make us who we are,” says the Society’s Special Events Officer, Daphne Tsai. “When you walk, you honor those who have passed and support our work to help provide help and hope for those living with the disease today.

“Everyone will be touched by dementia, whether it’s a relative, a friend or someone in your community. You can make a difference.”

Caregiving affects people emotionally and physically. It requires determination, empathy and kindness. And caregivers require support for everything from assisting with legal and financial decisions to helping with everyday tasks. The journey of dementia can’t be made alone.

That’s why individuals and teams from Fernie are invited to join the Virtual Walk. Funds raised support programs and services in the community that improve the quality of life for people living with dementia and for their families. As well, it supports other activities like education and public awareness

Walk for Alzheimer’s is Canada’s biggest fundraiser for Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. Already approximately 747,000 Canadians have the disease, with 70,000 of them living in British Columbia. That number will nearly double in the next 20 years, as age is the biggest risk factor and people are living longer.

Residents who are interested in starting a Walk in the community next year can contact Daphne Tsai at dtsai@alzheimerbc.org for more information.

For more information on local resources to help families live well with Alzheimer’s and other dementias, visit Alzheimerbc.org.