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Hundreds walk for Alzheimer's in Assiniboine Park

Hundreds of people gathered in Assiniboine Park Saturday to walk in support of those living with dementia in our province.

The IG Wealth Management Walk for Alzheimer's brought together more than 1,000 Manitobans raising funds for the Alzheimer's Society of Manitoba (ASM). Incoming CEO Erin Crawford said she was thrilled at the turnout. "There's a huge line of people out walking right now in honour and memory of people with dementia," she said. "It's just wonderful. It's a great day today!"

Participants walked a predetermined route through the park beginning at 10 a.m. Crawford said the money raised is fundamental to the programming they offer throughout the year. "We offer support groups for people, we give information about what is dementia, and what kinds of things are you likely to encounter," she said.

ASM also offers education workshops from experts in the field, as well as recreation programs. "(They're) fun opportunities to exercise a little bit and just visit with other people in similar sorts of circumstances," said Crawford.

The national event also funds Alzheimer's research in Canada. "Because we know at the end of the day we want to see some progress on diagnosis and treatment of dementia," Crawford said.

More than 18,000 people in Manitoba are affected by dementia. Crawford said that number is going to double in the next 25 years. "We did a survey a couple of years ago, and 62 per cent of Manitobans said they have had a close friend or family member with dementia," she added.

Alzheimer's is the most common of the diseases that fall under the umbrella term of "dementia." More than 67 per cent of all dementia cases are Alzheimer's.

Crawford said the signs of dementia can appear years before a formal diagnosis. "Once you talk to someone who has dementia and you talk to their families, something's got to be done to help support them through that journey. And that’s why this is so important for me," she said.

"It really is impacting more Manitobans than not, and I think you see that with the number of people who are here today." Top Stories

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