By Noah Hummel
My name is Noah Hummel. I’m a senior at Peninsula High School and a member of HOSA – Future Health Professionals, formerly known as Health Occupations Students of America. HOSA is a national career and technical student organization endorsed by the U.S. Department of Education. I’m very interested in the medical field and wanted to do a fundraiser for the Alzheimer’s Association. My Biomedical Innovations teacher, Mr. Brad Collins, was looking for a fundraiser for HOSA, so we teamed up to support the Alzheimer’s Association’s efforts to fund care, support, advocacy and research to find a cure for this terrible disease.
You may be wondering: Why Alzheimer’s? Approximately 200,000 Americans are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s every year and more than 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s right now. This disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States and since 2000, deaths due to Alzheimer’s have increased by 89 percent.
Presently, more than 15 million Americans are providing unpaid care for someone with Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia. Most people are unaware of the devastating effects of the disease on the patient and their family members. As the disease progresses, so does the amount of care required since people living with Alzheimer’s eventually require around the clock care and supervision. This can be a huge emotional and financial burden on the person’s family.
So why is this important to me? My beautiful and loving grandmother was diagnosed with dementia approximately four years ago. The disease has stolen precious time, events, and memories from her, leaving her confused and stressed, and our family feeling helpless. I want to help end Alzheimer’s, but it is going to take a concerted effort from all of us to find a cure.
Support Noah and Peninsula High School HOSA by donating to their Walk to End Alzheimer’s Team. Donations of at least $30 to Washington and Northern Idaho Walks will be matched through the end of the year up to $50,000.