Alzheimer Society needs volunteers

The Alzheimer Society of B.C. needs volunteers who can make outreach calls to caregivers for its First Link early intervention program.

Looking to make a difference in the Comox Valley?

Receiving a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia can be a difficult experience for people with dementia and their families. A phone call from someone who cares can reminds them that there is help available and they are not alone.

The local Resource Centre of the non-profit Alzheimer Society of B.C. needs volunteers who can make outreach calls to caregivers for its First Link early intervention program.

First Link connects individuals and families affected by dementia with services and support as soon as possible after diagnosis.

One in 11 B.C. residents over age 65 is affected by dementia and the number of cases is projected to double over the next generation. The resulting need for assistance is soaring. And volunteers help ensure that the demand is met.

“Volunteers are absolutely invaluable to our team,” says Jane Hope, the Society’s Support and Education Coordinator for the Valley and the Central/North Island. “It’s exceptionally rewarding work, to know that you are making a meaningful difference in someone’s life. Our volunteers tell us they get far more back in return than they give.”

First Link volunteers follow up every three to six months to ensure families receive information about the disease, planning for the future, tips for day-to-day living, and services in the community.

The positions have the following requirements:

• Excellent verbal communication skills and supportive listening skills;

• Knowledge of dementia and community resources or a willingness to learn;

• Formal or informal caregiving experience an asset;

Volunteers are asked to commit to one three-hour shift per week, during the day. Excellent training is provided.

For more information and to volunteer, contact Hope toll-free at 1-800-462-2833 or jhope@alzheimerbc.org.

Residents can get more information on Alzheimer’s disease and other

dementias by visiting www.alzheimerbc.org.

– Alzheimer Society of B.C.