FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE | December 16, 2005
Alzheimer's Foundation of America Announces ‘AFA Quilt to Remember'
Goal Includes Lifting Spirits during Holiday Season
NEW YORK, NY— In the spirit of the holiday season, the Alzheimer's Foundation of America (AFA) today unveiled its plans to bring comfort and hope to Americans with the creation of a national quilt to remember those affected by Alzheimer's disease and related illnesses.
The “AFA Quilt to Remember” is the first-ever national dementia-related quilt that will be grand in scale and expand in size with ongoing contributions for years to come. The thought-provoking quilt will be composed of large panels contributed by both individuals and organizations. It will be displayed in cities across the country, beginning next fall.
“The AFA Quilt to Remember will be brought to the heart of America. Piece by piece, it will help our nation recognize the reality and the enormity of this disease, and affirm that we stand united for optimal care and a cure,” said Eric J. Hall, AFA's chief executive officer.
“Our desire is for the quilt to bring comfort and hope during the holiday season and throughout the year to families affected by this heartbreaking brain disorder,” Hall added.
Each panel will be uniquely designed to memorialize individuals who have either passed from or are living with dementia, and honor family caregivers and other family members as well as healthcare professionals committed to the cause.
Patterned after the world famous AIDS Memorial Quilt, the AFA Quilt to Remember will consist of large patches and will continuously be added to over time. Panels contributed by individuals will be four feet by four feet and those produced by organizations will be eight feet by eight feet.
These characteristics “mirror the epidemic proportion of the disease and its ever-increasing impact on more and more Americans,” Hall said.
Currently, an estimated five million Americans have Alzheimer's disease, including one in ten aged 65 and older and nearly one in two aged 85 and older. The incidence is expected to triple by mid-century.
AFA has been at the forefront of several national initiatives, including its groundbreaking annual National Memory Screening Day, to focus attention on Alzheimer's disease and related illnesses, and the multitude of care issues faced by families each day.
“The quilt reflects another compelling way for AFA to bring the nation together for care,” Hall said.
AFA is currently accepting contributions for the AFA Quilt to Remember. For more information, including contribution instructions, call (toll-free) 866-AFA-8484.
AFA is a New York-based national nonprofit organization that focuses on “together for care…in addition to cure” for individuals with Alzheimer's disease and related illnesses, and their families. It unites hundreds of member organizations across North America that provide hands-on support services. At a national level, AFA's services include a toll-free hotline, educational materials, a free magazine for caregivers, and training for healthcare professionals. For more information, call (toll-free) 866-AFA-8484 or visit www.alzfdn.org .
Contact: Carol Steinberg