In 2016, I applied to be a receptionist at an assisted living, Joseph C. Thomas. I did not know it was a memory care facility at the time, nor did I know anything about memory care. I got the job and was overwhelmed at how many residents there were, thinking I would never know them all. However, those 80+ residents changed me forever.
I, in fact, did get to know them all, beyond what I thought. I learned where the residents came from and what made them smile. I learned what kind of music they like... and don't like. I learned more about World War I and the different places many of them served. I learned life lessons through the things they said like how to get over a breakup and how to live every day a day at a time. Lastly, I learned that I have such a soft spot for the elderly population.
I transferred from community college to Longwood University in the fall of 2017. And I decided I wanted to join a sorority. I was looking into each of the sororities, going to open houses, etc, when one specific sorority stood out to me. Their philanthropy is Alzheimer's Research AND gerontology. I kept my options open, but I knew I wanted to join a sorority that allowed me to continue to advocate for the things I love. Therefore, I joined Sigma Kappa and later became the Vice President of Philanthropic Services. We get to put on this Alz Walk every year and every month we go and play BINGO at a nearby retirement home.
I want to continue to advocate for those battling Alzheimer's. I want to teach people that it is more than forgetting little things, it is a debilitating disease that affects themselves and their loved ones. I walk for the JCT residents who taught me more than they'd ever know, I walk for their families who never gave up on them, I walk for my grandmother who passed away after battling dementia, and I walk for the nurses and CNAs who spend every day with the residents and care for them.
I'm leading the way to Alzheimer's first survivor by participating in the Alzheimer's Association Walk to End Alzheimer's®. Currently, more than 5 million Americans have Alzheimer's and that number is expected to grow to as many as 16 million by 2050. Our future is at risk unless we can find a way to change the course of this disease.
Together, we can end Alzheimer's disease. Please make a donation to advance the care, support and research efforts of the Alzheimer's Association.
Thank you for joining the fight against Alzheimer's!
Thank you for helping us advance Alzheimer's support, care and research!
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