AN Alzheimer’s charity founded by a daughter determined to make a difference to sufferers and carers in Swindon raised its profile yesterday at its first fundraising event.
After witnessing the effects of the condition firsthand, Stella Edwards, who became her father Samuel’s full-time carer when he was diagnosed with dementia in December 2010, decided to share her daily battles and victories with others online. Three months ago the 41-year-old from Broadgreen started her own blog, Don’t Be Like That Stella. Prompted by its unexpected success she has now launched her own charity, with the same name, which will fund trips out for dementia patients.
She held a fundraiser at Nuffield Health Centre, in Greenbridge, on Tuesday to make the excursions a reality and collect money for both her organisation and the Alzheimer’s Society.
“What we really want to do is raise awareness of the charity,” she said. “I just started a blog and called it ‘Don’t be like that Stella’ because that’s what my dad says when I say no to him. “Initially I had decided to start raising money for Alzheimer’s Society to organise trips for members but it turns out that they don’t do trips. So I thought I would start a charity and do it.
“I do a lot of things with my dad and we go out together but what about elderly people? If one of them has dementia the other might not be able to take him out without support.” Samuel, 81, was diagnosed with the condition after his behaviour began changing. “Now he is cared for by Care UK at home and he is doing really well,” said Stella.
As Stella and her father have become regular visitors to the gym over the past five months, Nuffield Health Centre was the ideal venue to raise awareness of the new charity. At the event, which ran from 9am until 8pm, gym patrons were offered free glucose, heart rate and cholesterol checks. For more information or to make a donation visit www.dontbelikethatstella.co.uk