Dementia Warrior Bianca joins Race Against Dementia for Papa’s 81st Birthday
Campaigner Bianca Pittman has joined Australia’s largest dementia fundraising event in celebration of her Papa’s eighty-first birthday, Sunday March 26.
“I thought the Adelaide Memory Walk & Jog sounded like a great event to raise awareness of the disease which affects my Papa, as well as contribute financially to the cause.” Bianca said.
Bianca first noticed her Papa, Bruce wasn't himself when he forgot how to change the oil in his car.
“He had been an amazing motor mechanic his whole life and this had once been a very easy task for him to complete.”
There continued to be gradual changes in Bruce’s behaviour over the following two years, during which time he was diagnosed with dementia.
In June 2015, Bruce’s wife, who had been acting as his primary carer, had a stroke leaving her incapable of caring for him in the way she once did.
Bianca’s family had to find alternate care for their Papa, as he was unable to complete basic tasks such as showering, speaking, and meal preparation.
Bruce was accepted into a local high care dementia facility eighteen months ago.
Bruce has a rare form of dementia known as Frontotemporal Lobe, identified by progressive damage to the frontal and/or temporal lobes of the brain.
The right and left frontal lobes are involved in mood, social behaviour, attention, judgement, planning, and self-control.
Damage to these areas may lead to reduced intellectual abilities and changes in personality, emotion, and behaviour.
“Papa's dementia has impacted our lives because of the huge behaviour and personality changes he has undergone.” Bianca said.
“He used to be loud, boisterous, and the life of the party... so now family events will never be the same because he doesn't talk anymore.”
Through fundraising, Bianca hopes to support research and services which could benefit future generations of her family – memorywalkandjogsa.gofundraise.com.au/page/BiancaDementiaResearch
Celebrate Bruce’s eighty-first birthday by walking or running with Bianca, Sunday March 26 at Colley Reserve, Glenelg – www.memorywalk.com.au
Memory Walk & Jog is the largest fundraiser for dementia in Australia. In 2017, Alzheimer’s Australia will hold 18 Memory Walk & Jog events around the country to raise funds to support people with dementia, their families and carers, and help promote brain health and healthy lifestyles to all Australians. All courses are wheelchair accessible and there are different distances to choose from, depending on your age and fitness level.
Alzheimer’s Australia SA is the charity for people with dementia and their families and carers. As the peak body, it provides advocacy, support services, education and information. An estimated 353,800 people have dementia in Australia. This number is projected to reach more than half a million by 2030.
National Dementia Helpline: 1800 100 500
An interpreter service is available
(The National Dementia Helpline is an Australian Government Initiative)
Dementia is a National Health Priority Area www.fightdementia.org.au
Claire Morris I Events Administrator I Claire.Morris@dementia.org.au I 08 8372 2152
Mason Krollig I Social Media & Digital Marketing Officer I Mason.Krollig@dementia.org.au I 08 8372 2149