September and October have been designated as Coffee Break months for Alzheimer's Awareness.
Leona Doerksen is the South Eastman Regional Coordinator for the Alzheimer Society of Manitoba, she says hundreds of coffee breaks are held throughout the province during those months.
"The Alzheimer's Society has been holding coffee break events for over 20 years, and the Society has been in the province for over 30. Since the beginning, we've raised over one million dollars, so it's a significant fundraiser for us."
Doerksen says more than 22,000 people in Manitoba are affected by Alzheimer's disease or Dementia and 3 out of 4 families say they have a close friend or relative with the disease.
“There is no cure for Alzheimer's or Dementia, and part of the mandate for the Society is to raise funds for research. We are very proud to have a research team right here in Manitoba that are working towards better supports for families as well as people who go through dementia, and obviously a cure.”
A coffee break was recently held at Villa Youville in the Town of Ste. Anne, and Tenant Resource Coordinator Nicole Trudeau shares they began a support group for families because of the coffee break they held last year. "We had Leona Doerksen come out and speak to us last year, and because we have two wings dedicated to Alzheimer's patients, that's proof we need the help of the Alzheimer's Society."
Doerksen says participating in the fundraiser is as easy as putting on a pot of coffee, putting out a donation box, and inviting your family and friends over. "We are a charitable organization, so we depend almost entirely on donor gifting, so it goes a long way in providing services and programs for the Alzheimer's Society."