By Cecilia Nasmith/Today’s Northumberland
Charity walks may be called off for COVID-19, but Plainville resident Cindy Trew is not going to miss her chance to support the Alzheimer’s Society Sunday.
And she hopes you’ll show your support between noon and 1 p.m. – when she’ll just be out walking around her property at 8030 Cavan Rd. – just by driving by to wave, honk your horn and maybe even drop off a donation.
Trew has been living with Alzheimer’s Disease for eight and a half years, since her husband Alan was diagnosed. Shortly thereafter, she became an annual participant in what was then known as the Walk To Remember in Cobourg. Over the years, the name of the walk has changed to the Walk For Alzheimer’s, and it has become a regional walk that takes place at Trent University in Peterborough.
But she was always there and, over the years, raised about $1,300.
Even though it’s gone regional, she said, what’s raised in Northumberland stays in Northumberland to support local Alzheimer’s Society services. And frankly, Trew said, “I don’t know where I would be without the Alzheimer’s Society. They do wonderful work.”
Educational support comes through both personal outreach and classes (on-line these days, of course). Both elements are important, she said – support and education.
“The little things they tell you to look out for,” she said, listing coping and communications mechanisms to address the effects of advancing Alzheimer’s Disease like the loss of depth perception and peripheral vision.
There’s a monthly support group, and in-home visits if needed. And they have a volunteer corps of wonderful people who offer friendly visiting and – in some communities – a walk-along service to accompany those with Alzheimer’s who love a good walk now and then.
During these self-isolating times, Trew especially looks forward to two on-line programs.
Mondays and Wednesdays at 10 a.m., both she and her husband enjoy Minds In Motion, an exercise-and-socialize time for both caregivers and their Alzheimer’s person. And on weekdays at 2 p.m., there’s Happy Hour – though she finds her husband doesn’t have a great deal of interest in this one.
And almost all of the services come to her without charge.
“They have always been there for us,” Trew said.
As soon as her husband got his diagnosis, she recalls, they made a point of letting family members and neighbours know what was happening. Since then, they have found their small farming community is always there for them too as they find their way through this particular journey.
And though the local Alzheimer’s Society unit now includes Northumberland, Peterborough, Haliburton and Kawartha Lakes, the community they serve still feels like a close and supportive small town where every individual – caregiver and patient – is a person everyone cares about.
Trew is pleased with how response is shaping up on her on-line donor page, and she has received a few other donations as well. She’s hoping for similar good results Sunday, when you can find her out and about between noon and 1 p.m. at 8030 Cavan Rd., just off the highway in Plainville, located just west of the Plainville United Church.