November is National Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month and National Family Caregiver Month

Candlelight Reflections will honor all those affected by Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders as well as all family caregivers. We invite communities and organizations across the state to participate in and/or host Candlelight Reflections on Thursday, November 6, 2008.

Families provide at least 80% of all long-term care – an enormous contribution to the long term care system. In North Carolina, 1.7 million adults are caring for an older person–more than 28% of the adult population. Over 40% of North Carolina caregivers take care of someone with a memory disorder like Alzheimer’s disease. Their “caregiving career” will last an average of 8 years but may be as long as 20.

One in ten Americans say that they have a family member with Alzheimer’s and one in three know someone with the disease. Alzheimer’s disease is now the fifth leading cause of death in the United States following heart disease, cancer, cerebrovascular disease, and chronic lower respiratory diseases.

In North Carolina alone, an estimated 150,000 have the disease. Over the next 20 years, this number is expected to increase to 253,000 residents. More than 70% of people with Alzheimer’s disease live at home and are cared for by family and friends.

Please join us on November 6th for Candlelight Reflections. Our hope is that the flame of each candle will enlighten our communities and state leaders as to the growing numbers of those living with Alzheimer’s and the critical need to support all family caregivers.

Please contact your local Alzheimer’s Association Chapter, regional Area Agency on Aging and/ or the Duke African-American Outreach Program for more information on Candlelight Reflections and other National Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month and Family Caregiver Month activities and programs.

Alzheimer’s Association Western Carolina Chapter: (704) 532-7392 or
Duke Bryan Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (ADRC) African-American Community Outreach Program (AACOP): 866-444-2372
Area Agency on Aging Family Caregiver Resource Specialists:
Region F counties (Anson, Cabarrus, Gaston, Iredell, Lincoln, Mecklenburg, Rowan, Stanly and Union) call (704) 348-2726
Region C (Cleveland County) call (828) 287-2281

to honor, hope, and remember…