Who Knew That Sharing Your Story Would Have Such an Impact?
Last year, almost 200 family members, friends and individuals with Alzheimer’s from across the state joined together in Albany on Rally Day to share their stories, their struggles and their needs with legislators. On the table was the Governor’s proposal for $25 million to sustain Alzheimer’s caregiver support services, the heart and soul of what the Alzheimer’s Association offers 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Meeting with Legislators
Meeting by meeting, those grateful for the Alzheimer’s Association’s support through care consultations, support groups, educational programs or the 24-hour Helpline, described their Alzheimer’s journeys and elucidated the need for the support.
Legislators heard the message loud and clear: increased caregiver support was necessary for improved care of those diagnosed and for improved health of the caregiver. An investment in caregiver support could also delay (or eliminate the need for) placing loved ones in skilled nursing homes. Fifty million dollars was appropriated in the state’s 2015-2016 budget for increased Alzheimer’s caregiver support services over two years, and the Alzheimer’s Association is a key recipient of the investment.
On March 8, 2016, advocates again travelled to Albany and this time, they said thank you for the great investment and recognition of the vital role caregivers play in the Alzheimer’s journey.
Now, we are saying thank you to you. Thank you for sharing your story. Thank you for coming forward and asking for support. Thank you for telling your friends and family to also reach out to us for support. Thank you for posting on Facebook and Twitter. Thank you for writing letters to the editor. And thank you for the love, time and attention with which you care for your loved one with Alzheimer’s disease or related dementia.
We look forward to seeing you again on March 14, 2017, for our next Alzheimer’s Rally Day.
For more information on statewide policy efforts, please contact Jeannine Smith, Director of Communications and Statewide Relations, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 518-867-4999, x222.