Alzheimers Waikato increases numbers to meet growing demand

By helenmetcalfe on March 29, 2015

Two out of every three New Zealanders is touched by dementia, a devastating illness for which there is no known cure.

Dementia takes many different forms but often results in changes in memory, thinking, behaviour, personality and emotions, and a person’s ability to perform everyday tasks.

Alzheimers Waikato provides valuable support to people affected by Alzheimer’s and dementia, including their families and carers. They recently expanded their team appointing a new manager, Sue O’Donnell so that their Educator, Jane Kay could focus on providing education and support to the Waikato community.

“We offer people affected by dementia, a support system that includes education, support groups and strategies to assist in caring for someone with dementia. We do home visits, telephone monitoring, and provide comprehensive written information to clients,” says O’Donnell.

“My recent appointment will allow Jane to spend more time assisting the growing number of people affected by this illness. Dementia is one of the most difficult illnesses to deal with and the work that we do in the community gives people the support they need to carry on and maintain quality of life.”

Harcourts Hamilton gave Alzheimer’s Waikato Charitable Trust a funding grant of $2300, through the Harcourts Foundation, which was used towards the purchase of a new computer for Ms O’Donnell earlier this year.

Harcourts Hamilton business owner, Brian King says that the work Alzheimers Waikato does in the community is making a positive difference to the lives of people every day.

“The staff at Alzheimers Waikato are doing valuable work helping people to understand and deal with dementia. It’s an illness that will impact a growing number of us, and we’re very happy that through the Harcourts Foundation we’re able to contribute in some small way,” says King.

It is estimated that by 2030, eighty eight thousand New Zealanders will be directly affected by dementia.

Ms O’Donnell says that Alzheimers Waikato relies on the generosity of individuals and businesses to continue their work in the community.

“We currently have 579 active clients with dementia and this number is growing. Support from businesses like Harcourts, is what enables us to meet the increasing demand for our services,” says Ms O’Donnell.

The Harcourts Foundation was established in 2008 and to date has raised almost three million dollars to support local community groups. Money is raised through charitable giving by Harcourts employees, as well as fundraising events.

For more information contact:
Helen Metcalfe
027 901 0174