World Alzheimer’s Day 2019

eon cyclists fundraising for alzheimers
Posted 20/09/2019 by E.ON

World Alzheimer’s Day takes place on 21 September every year and is part of World Alzheimer's Month, with a focus this year on stigma.

At E.ON, we’re committed to making energy more accessible for people living with dementia and creating dementia-friendly communities and we now have more than 5,000 colleagues who have become Dementia Friends. Increasing understanding of the causes and different types of dementia, as well as the everyday steps we can take to ease the lives of those living with dementia, will help beat the stigma sometimes attached to the disease.

fundraisers celebrating the end of a cycling race

Earlier this year, Alzheimer’s Society brought together experts who agreed that evidence to date supports several possible ways that pollution could be indirectly associated with dementia. We’re also seeking to raise awareness of the need for cleaner air, including through our 16ft LUNGS installation which visually represents the issue of air pollution.

We’ve been in partnership with Alzheimer’s Society since June 2016 and since then we’ve run an extensive programme of events to encourage colleague fundraising and engagement. And we’re constantly impressed by individual colleagues’ enthusiasm for setting themselves personal sponsored challenges and their commitment to seeing them through.

We’ve raised more than £260,000 for Alzheimer’s Society since our partnership began, helping the charity to fund its care for people living with and affected by dementia. And we’re celebrating our fundraising highlights so far this year to mark World Alzheimer’s Day:

Trek Fest - a 25km hike through the Peak District
A team of eight who cycled from London to Paris 
The Three Peaks Challenge 
A group of colleagues who cycled between our two biomass-fired power stations, from Scotland to Sheffield

Jim’s story

We were a real mixed bag when it came to our cycling abilities, from beginners to serious competitors, but we planned our training together to make sure we could complete the ride as a team and raise awareness and more than £13,000 for this very worthy charity. Most of the team have witnessed the impact that dementia can have on friends and loved ones, and for me personally, it was about providing support not just for those who have dementia themselves but also for those that provide the necessary care and support for their affected loved ones. 

Sam’s story

When the opportunity to complete the Three Peaks challenge came along I jumped at the chance. As much training as we’d all done beforehand, it’s safe to say none of us were quite ready for what the mountains had in store for us. By the time we reached our second mountain of the 24-hour period we were exhausted and faced with high winds and sideways rain at 1am really upped the challenge. Despite how hard it was physically, I found it extremely rewarding.

I was inspired to fundraise for Alzheimer’s Society after my friend’s mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. I’ve known her most of my life, so the diagnosis was tough. I’ve seen the support that Alzheimer’s Society offered and the great work that the charity does so I wanted to do what I could to raise money.

fundraisers at the peak

Rich’s story

I organised a 200-mile cycle ride from Lockerbie to Sheffield – between two of our biomass-fired power stations – and raising more than £6,500 for Alzheimer’s Society. We finished the ride at Blackburn Meadows power station, three days after setting off from Steven’s Croft power station near Lockerbie. We took on some serious elevation across the Pennines and Yorkshire Dales, but we cycled together as a team and could spur each other on when the going got really tough. Alzheimer’s Society does important work, and more and more people are likely going to need to call on their services in the future. We’re proud that we’ve been able to contribute to such a worthwhile cause and know that every penny we’ve raised will help make a big difference to people living with dementia and their carers.

And that’s not all, later this year colleagues from our sites across the country will help make up the more than 100,000 supporters taking part in Alzheimer Society’s sponsored Memory Walks.

Cat’s story 

A few years ago, I became a Dementia Champion where I encourage others to make a positive difference to people living with dementia in their community. We do this by giving people information about the personal impact of dementia and what they can do to help. My grandma had dementia and died almost 20 years ago. Becoming a Dementia Champion has made me realise that as a family we didn’t understand what was happening to her and sadly probably didn’t support her as much as I now know we could have done. 

So, amongst other fundraising events, each year I sign up for the Memory Walks and walk for my grandma and everyone else that needs the support of Alzheimer’s Society. It’s a great day out with a wonderful atmosphere and there’s different route options so everyone can join in the fun. I go with my family - mum, sister, 2-year-old niece, my dog and my sister’s dog – we have a lovely day out together and get to help raise lots of money for Alzheimer’s Society. 

We’re proud of our partnership with Alzheimer’s Society and that it won the ‘Better Society Award’ for ‘Partnership with a Health Charity’ in May this year. 

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