A Word From Our Executive Director – Advancing Our Mission

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Dear Friend,

From research to program and awareness to fundraising, we have exciting news to share about the advancement of our mission.   I want to say thank you on behalf of our board, communities and the 30,000 people with this disease in the Miami Valley area for your support.  Together we are making a tremendous difference both locally for people in need of service and nationally in our fight to end this disease.  Here are a few quick updates:

Research and Advocacy  After increasing the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) Alzheimer’s Research budget from $350 million to around $900 million over the last two years, Congress continues to hear our collective voice.  In a bi-partisan appeal, congress added an additional $400 million for critical Alzheimer’s research to the annual budget.  If accepted, we will be edging closer to our goal of $2 billion dollars in research funding.  Without the leadership of the Alzheimer’s Association inspired by each of you who participate in our mission, these funding increases would not happen.  Special thanks also to all those who have helped advocate for legislation to advance research and care. To learn more about research, join us for our Research and Innovation Program – “Will I Be Next” on October 26, 2016.

Program  Serving our local families continues to be an essential part of our mission.  We experienced an 8% increase in service to our families through information and referral and care consultations.   By investing in partnerships with local physicians’ offices through grants and private donations, we have increased our physician referrals from 3% to over 10.1%.  We also launched our new Early Stage program as the demand from physicians sending people earlier in the disease increased.  In 2017, we will add to our Early Stage program by partnering with the Dayton Metro Library offering a monthly program for our participants.   

Awareness  By increasing awareness of our cause, we break the isolation of Alzheimer’s.   We continue to hear from individuals after their loved one passes, “I did not know the Alzheimer’s Association services were available.”  One local company, Dayton Freight, gave a generous gift to fund a web advertising campaign aimed directly at caregivers.  Their investment, like yours, will continue to drive the availability of our services to many new individuals and remind others they are not alone in their struggle with Alzheimer’s.

Development  Last spring over 700 people attended the Dayton and Springfield Reason to Hope® events and together they contributed over $170,000 to essential programs and leading research.  At the Dayton event, we welcomed Ashley Campbell, daughter of country legend Glen Campbell, and were reminded that this disease impacts everyone!  Our newest signature event, The Longest Day® raised an additional $31,000 and featured our first Radiothon with WHIO Radio!     Thank you to all who participated and made these events successful.  We have now completed our most successful Walk to End Alzheimer’s® season to date, and are excited to celebrate in our increased awareness and fundraising. 

Growing the Call for Urgency  Recently, a Walk team captain who raised over $30,000 in just three years, passionately shared why she walks and I found her words to be very powerful! 

“I walk because the need to end this disease is real, necessary and urgent.”

 Because of our work together, we made significant strides in recent months, but we are just at the beginning.  In this letter we include our “Why Now” campaign that graphically conveys our need for urgency and our plan to address the key issues as we grow our support.  I invite you to join me in escalating the urgency by engaging more people in our story and inviting them to join our cause through advocacy, volunteering and giving financial support.

Again, we so appreciate you and look forward to exciting reports of advances on our mission in the months and years to come!

Moving our Mission Forward,

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Eric VanVlymen, MSW
Executive Director

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