Without Trails

Tri-Cities invited to tackle hiking trails in hopes of raising $70K for Alzheimer’s

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B.C. society launching a three-week fall initiative in hopes residents can step into patients’ shoes and endure their own uphill battle.

September is Alzheimer’s awareness month and a provincial non-profit is eyeing the Tri-Cities to spread the word on the mountains, in the woods and in local neighbourhoods.

On Sept. 1, the Alzheimer Society of B.C. is launching its fall initiative — the Climb for Alzheimer’s.

It encourages residents and supporters to go hiking on trails in the region and endure a physical uphill battle, matching the challenge that nearly 70,000 British Columbians diagnosed with dementia experience mentally on a daily basis.

The 10th edition of the annual event has set a goal to raise $70,000 for critical programs and services in the Tri-Cities and across the province.

“The circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic, coupled with extreme heat and fires throughout much of the province, have posed uphill challenges for all of us,” said Alzheimer Society of B.C. spokesperson Aniria Sanz in a release to the Tri-City News

“But they have taken an extra toll on people affected by dementia, who have experienced isolation and uncertainty as well as a loss of many services. In many cases, these isolating conditions can contribute to cognitive decline.”

“Now more than ever, we are pulling out all the stops to make sure British Columbians affected by dementia are able to access the support they need,” added Jen Lyle, CEO for the society.

“We continue to adapt our programming to a virtual setting, so it is accessible, no matter where you are in the province.”

It will look different this year for the health and safety of everyone amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Residents are encouraged to register online and clock in your routes between Sept. 1 and 21 through the Climb for Alzheimer’s campaign page.

Additonally, hikers are being invited to join others at the Grouse Grind for a group hike on Sept. 19.

For more information, interested participants and donors are encouraged to visit the fundraiser’s website.

For questions about dementia or memory loss, or to connect to the Alzheimer Society of B.C.’s programs and services, call the First Link Dementia Helpline at 1-800-936-6033. The Helpline is available Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Information and support is also available in Punjabi (1-833-674-5003) and in Cantonese or Mandarin (1-833-674-5007) Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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