I have often wondered what people get out of being involved with Alzheimer’s and Dementia Charities, as we all have vastly different needs and requirements, depending on the type of dementia and the stage we are in.
For a long time I was quite active with one charity and then stepped back through problems, but at the same time my life was being run by charity work, and there was little time to step back, take it easy and think clearly.
Coupled with this was the fact that my family life took a back seat, and that was becoming very hard. I really wanted to see more of the family and also spend time with my hobbies, and this was not happening, I guess it becomes too hard to say no.
I know that dementia is a well-known illness, but it does need to be given more of a high profile these days, as many still associate it with an age related illness.
We all know that this is wrong, as there are many under the age of 65 who have the illness, so it can strike at any time and any age.
Many charities and those in government circles still talk about people with the illness, who are 70 years of age and older, yet they forget the thousands of people who were diagnosed under the age of 65, and in some cases well under 65.
I do think that until this is corrected, we will never move on as many will carry on saying it’s just a normal age related illness
There is still a lot of stigma attached to dementia’s of all kinds and this must be got rid of as soon as possible. I say that because as we all know Cancer had a lot of stigma attached to it in the 1960s, now it’s gone from there, and we have it in dementia.
There are many charities out in the world today some small and small quite large, but I do wonder whether they are really focused on those with the illness, because to do so would mean having people with dementia actively involved in all levels of the processes.
I admit that not everyone wants to be involved with charities, especially if it means doing a lot of travelling round the country
But many still do it as it keeps their brains active, and it also means the any campaigns are focused on those with the illness. This is because these people really know what it’s like to live with it, and what problems they face on a daily basis.
But in this day and age I do think that charities have a lot to offer, providing they indeed focus on those with the illness, and produce literature which is easy for us all to read.
I say this because many dementia documents are written by professionals with professionals in mind, and use wording that many of us have forgotten about or simply do not understand, or its medical jargon.
All of these charities are different, and I suppose it all depends on whether you wish to be involved with a small but local charity or a large national one, coupled with the fact that some local charities have quite a lot of local activities, which you can take part in.
I do recommend that those who can, should get involved in these charities, to do either campaigning, media or other work as it can be fulfilling.
It is also gives us a worthwhile role in society.
I enjoyed my time thoroughly and would do it all again if asked, as I feel that its very important, not only to help others in the future, but by doing something like this you are also helping yourself by keeping your brain active, and nothing can beat that.
While I do think there is a lot of internal politics, in all businesses and charities
These days, we only have to learn to step back, and take things easy.