The Alzheimer Society Campaign is looking for 100 Mile House residents living with dementia to help break silence on stigma by going sharing their story. The society’s I live with dementia. Let me help you understand. launched on Jan. 6 as part of Alzheimer’s Awareness Month.
“Unless you have experienced it firsthand, it can be difficult to appreciate the damage stigma can do to individuals and families facing dementia,” said Tara Hildebrand, support and education coordinator for the Alzheimer Society of B.C.’s Central Interior resource centre in a Jan. 6 news release.
According to the same release, research has indicated that one in four Canadians would feel ashamed or embarrassed if they had dementia.
“Too often, negative feelings, attitudes and stereotypes surrounding dementia dissuade people from seeking help and discourage others from lending their support. By providing a platform for Canadians to share their stories, we can cultivate empathy and compassion and help break down the stigma so that Canadians living with dementia can live a full life.”
People can share their stories, or read about other’s, at ilivewithdementia.ca. The website also has information to help find out more about the disease and more information on how to help. It also can help get residents of 100 Mile House and other communities in touch with local support groups.
“The number of Canadians living with dementia is soaring,” said Hildebrand. “So this is an extremely important campaign to pause and think about our attitudes and perceptions and build a more accepting and inclusive society for individuals and families living with dementia in 100 Mile House.”
According to the release, more than half a million Canadians are living with dementia. By 2032, nearly a million Canadians will be living with the disease.