I haven’t talked about it much, but I’m currently in grad school working on my Master’s in Library Science, with the intent to get my grad certificate in Archives (which is also my focus/specialty). This summer, I’m in Library Management. One of our projects is to write up and present a mock/fake grant application and presentation. I did my presentation last weekend (unfortunately, my file got messed up, so I had to just talk out my presentation). I chose a library system in a town I have been in love with for years now. I can’t share my presentation publicly (not without altering/removing the name of the library, as this is a fake application). But I thought I would share what it’s generally about and why I’m so damn passionate about it.
My mock grant project is called Fighting Alzheimer’s and Dementia with Literacy. This is for Library Management class. I made my presentation in class (although my slide didn’t show) last week, but today is the deadline for turning in the grant application.
I think libraries can provide an awesome resource for Alzheimer’s and dementia patients in the form of group activities and reading. Bringing in occupational therapists as well as volunteers to help the people in the program read books geared FOR THEM is a way to reach out to an often pushed aside part of our community. Some games like crosswords and dominoes to help with critical thinking, reading to keep language fresh, a little physical activity to get the blood going…. these are all things that can help slow down the build up of brain plaque that causes Alzheimer’s.
For those who are new to my friends’ list and my life, my maternal grandfather and mother both had Alzheimer’s (granddad also had cancer, which took him before his Alzheimer’s got really noticeable). This, along with some other things, is one of my ongoing passions. To help with awareness and bringing it out in the open so we can get a proper dialogue going. There is no cure, no way to radically slow down the progression, but to provide a little slowing with activities and improve quality of life while they can is something we need to look at… not keeping those family members and friends hidden away. 5 million people are affected by Alzheimer’s… that number will only climb as our population ages. Anything that can be done to help them SHOULD be done. And not everyone can afford to go to therapists privately. Alzheimer’s doesn’t discriminate against income levels or race. Enrichment opportunities should be available to ALL.
I would honestly love to make this happen in reality, not just as a class project.