Heart to Heart Hospice provides for patients and their families through medical care and support but also donates time and resources to causes near and dear to their hearts. Every year, Heart to Heart Hospice Foundation sponsors, and Heart to Heart Hospice employees volunteer at Walk to End Alzheimer’s events in their respective communities across Indiana, Michigan, and Texas.
Almost 21% of hospice patients have a principal diagnosis of Alzheimer’s, dementia, or Parkinson’s, which is higher than any other disease (NHPCO 2021 Facts and Figures). Many times, these diseases also serve as a secondary diagnosis to a terminal illness. Hospice staff is trained and familiar with the unique needs of Alzheimer’s patients, and personalized care plans are created with every patient intake. Hospice professionals then educate family members and walk alongside them in carrying out daily caregiving duties.
“In every Alzheimer’s story, there’s also a love story. Hold onto yours, for it can carry you and your loved one through the longest days and darkest nights,” writes Rosalys Peel, author of Mike & Me.
Caregivers of those with Alzheimer’s are 40% more likely to suffer from depression, and 60% report high levels of stress. Families may feel isolated and uncertain when caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s, but these community events help them know they are not alone and provide education about vital resources, including program scholarships and critical needs grants for qualifying patients and family members.
The Heart to Heart Hospice Foundation sponsors and participates in Walk to End Alzheimer’s events to raise awareness and funding for Alzheimer’s care and support. The Foundation’s Alzheimer’s and Dementia Support Program supports Alzheimer’s patients as well as their loved ones.
“These walks are a great opportunity to get our employees and others involved and educate communities about hospice and our Foundation,” said Victoria Mitchell, Heart to Heart Hospice Foundation Administrator in Plano, Texas. Staff members noted that these walks are a positive way to connect around a great cause with other medical caregivers and families.
“We had a blast and got together with a lot of amazing people. I was so happy to be a part of this wonderful event!” said Tracy Whitaker of Heart to Heart Hospice of Northern Indiana on the Walk To End Alzheimer’s in Lake County.
“It was a great event, a beautiful day and a big crowd. Heart to Heart Hospice of Evansville was proud to be a part of this event,” shared Jacquelyn Fehd, Executive Director of Heart to Heart Hospice of Evansville, Indiana.
Heart to Heart understands that hospice care is more than just an occupation, and many families express their appreciation for hospice team members who become like family. Providing ongoing outreach, such as walk events, is vital in reaching families who need caregiver support for Alzheimer’s patients.
The funds raised at Walk to End Alzheimer’s events go toward care, and support efforts of the nonprofit Alzheimer’s Association. In 2022, the top 10 walks across the U.S. gathered $875,000-plus each in donations. Find a team to support via the Alzheimer’s Association or learn more about the Heart to Heart Foundation here with programs for Alzheimer’s, veterans, cancer, cardiovascular, and more.