Alzheimers SA

Cause Profile

It is estimated that about 250,000 people in South Africa have some form of dementia.  As our population ages, projections are that we, along with the rest of the world, will see this number increase dramatically.  Right now, one in twenty South Africans are estimated to be over 60 and this is expected to treble in coming years.  At 65 years of age, it is estimated that 4-5% of the population has dementia.  This increases sharply to 30% at the age of 80.

Dementia affects the chemistry of the brain, causing loss of memory and intellectual functioning, personality changes and, ultimately, physical deterioration.  Most commonly, dementia is the result of Alzheimer’s disease.  Other triggers include Aids, vascular damage and alcohol abuse.  

Our mission.

To create public awareness and provide support in matters pertaining to dementia, through the development and provision of relevant information, educational and training programes and support services throughout SA. We have a national office in Johannesburg and representation through regional offices in 8 provinces.

Our primary objectives are to.

 

  • Increase public awareness of dementia.
  • Educate people with dementia, families, health professionals, care givers and the general public about the nature and management of dementia.
  • Foster self-help, develop resources and network for families and communities caring for someone with dementia.
  • Advocate for research into all aspects of dementia.

 These are executed using the following platforms.

Conducting accredited training courses in dementia care for nursing staff, family members, professional carers and volunteers.

  • A nation-wide network of support structures offering counselling, information and help to families and other carers.
  • A national helpline staffed by councellors.
  • Education, training and awareness offered by our development workers and volunteer teams.
  • The assessment of individual needs, service development and referral of members of the general public who contact ASA to experts and other resources.
  • The development of educational and training materials, informative newsletters through our website and libraries at national and regional level.;
  • Lobbying and advocacy – through membership of the Patient Health Alliance of Non-Governmental organisations and the SA Older Persons’ Forum and approaching government and service providers on behalf of people with dementia and their carers.
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