Since 2003, The Judy Fund has raised nearly $5 million from over 1,600 donors individuals, families and businesses. To make a gift in support of the Alzheimer's Association's Judy Fund, please go to the donation section below.
This summer offered me the opportunity to travel in France, where I learned many important things, among them: Sancerre as a daily ritual is a perfect compliment to a Paris afternoon; Jim Morrison has many famous neighbors resting alongside him at PŔre Lachaise and the literal translation for the word "memory" in French is souvenir.
What a delightful way to think about memories — as souvenirs of one's existence, little treasures collected and preserved and appreciated over a lifetime. Some of these treasures are shared, some are kept private, but all have a home in the annals of the brain, categorized and stored, ready to spring into action when called upon. Hundreds of billions, (I actually read it was the equivalent of one million gigabytes) of tiny souvenirs of one's life, built upon over a lifetime, additive, intact and stored in each human brain.
Alzheimer's destroys those souvenirs and erases lifetimes. It is a thief of treasured possessions, robbing victims and families of generational knowledge. It is the destruction of a prized collection. It is the end.
Alzheimer's has affected our family for four generations. My children's great-grandmother Gertrude Glazer died of Alzheimer's disease. Her daughter, my mother, Judy Jaffe died the same way. My brothers and I are the generation of change; our children will likely be the generation of survivorship. Surviving Alzheimer's, a scientific concept that is likely to be a reality in the next couple of decades. I plan to be around to usher that science in.
We actively refer to the generations of The Judy Fund. The First Generation of the Fund is Judy and Marshall, their peers, and friends and family. JF2G refers to the Second Generation: Todd and Doreen, Dean and Marcie, Richard and I. We regularly reach out to engage friends and family of our generation in the cause. One example is our new "Judy Fund Salon Series," which speaks to boomer women about the important connection between their brain and heart health (see story on page 11).
JF3G is the future: the eight grandchildren of Judy — the Third Generation of the Fund. We use many tactics to engage this younger generation in the work of The Judy Fund. From the work of the Sigma Alpha Mu fraternity on college campuses across the country, to Ella and Sophie, who at just 13 years old, are already co-captains of The Judy Fund Team for the Los Angeles Walk to End Alzheimer's« — JF3G is making a significant mark on the future of this disease. Throughout this newsletter, you can read stories and reports on the generations of The Judy Fund, and how we bring so many people together to help us put an end to this disease.
Since The Judy Fund's inception in 2003, we have raised nearly $5 million to support the research and public policy efforts of the Alzheimer's Association. This continues to make us the fastest growing family fund in the history of the Association. We continue to grow and serve, for ourselves and for future generations. We want to keep the souvenirs of a person's lifetime intact, and ensure they are there to be shared. Help us grow, keep in touch, support our work.
Elizabeth Gelfand Stearns
The Judy Fund