I often get the question, “Is there anything I can do?” when I share my work to end Alzheimer’s Disease. Yes, there is: take AIM.
AIM stands for Alzheimer’s Impact Movement, and it is the Alzheimer’s Association political action campaign partner. Officially from the AIM website:
AIM is a nonpartisan, nonprofit advocacy organization working in strategic partnership with the Alzheimer’s Association to make Alzheimer’s a national priority. AIM is a membership organization and we ask you to join us! The annual membership fee is $20.
Members have access to member exclusive benefits and opportunities, and only members may contribute to AIMPAC. AIM relies on the support of its members to advance the Alzheimer’s agenda in Washington.
I am a number’s gal, and I firmly believe there is strength in numbers. Let me put it to you straight: we need bigger numbers (which means more members). The beauty of AIM is that for a political organization, it is actually – at least in my mind – very non-political. Because Alzheimer’s Disease does not discriminate in any way, form, or fashion, it is the definition of apolitical. In other words, the fight to #ENDALZ reaches every single person on capital hill, it reaches across party lines, and it does not care about one’s race, or sex, or age.
Beating Alzheimer’s is one – maybe the only one – issue that everyone can agree must be a priority. Best of all, our elected officials (from all parties) see that importance. Their struggle comes in with time. There are only so many hours in a day, in a week, and in a legislative session; the senate and congress depend upon us to know how to fight this truly atrocious disease.
That is where AIM, with a strong membership core made up of hundreds of thousands of Americans, comes in. The greater our numbers, the more influential our voice. As a collective group, AIM presents bills, research needs, and battle plans to legislators. Because AIM partners with the Alzheimer’s Association and gathers “intel” from all over the world, they are the most knowledgeable voice for what needs to be done. By joining AIM for $20 per year, you are speaking directly to your elected officials.
Just this week I had the opportunity to meet with an amazing, smart, savvy, and precious (I’m sure “precious” is not how she wants to be described, but it is true) legislative assistant for one of my Oklahoma senators. My big “ah ha” take away from our conversation is that Senator Inhofe oftentimes has challenges getting other senators to support Alzheimer’s funding and programs because of the time it takes to see results. In fact, Jennifer mentioned that if it takes longer than 10 years to see a dollar’s return on investment, politicians are hesitant to support spending that dollar in that particular way. This is because they want/need to show their constituents progress today, not in 15-25 years (isn’t that just the world we live in…instant success, immediate gratification, and all that now, now, now junk…grrrrr).
Here’s the truth: it WILL take 15-25 years for us to find a treatment so that people can live a normal, healthy life with Alzheimer’s Disease. It might take 50+ years to find a cure. This disease is that much of a monster. BUT…if we don’t fund the science now to start that timeline, in the future we will regret having not started much earlier. By building AIM, we prove to our elected officials that we want them to make those tough, long-term decisions and that we support them for supporting the battle to beat and end ALZ.
When I was in Orlando for the Alzheimer’s Association Summit this past January, one of the presenting doctors made a profound statement: “We are all going to die, that’s a fact. I want to die of something else, with my memories intact.” To that I say, “ME TOO!!” But to make that an option in my future – in your future – we must come together today.
Please use this link to place your $20 annual AIM membership:
I usually don’t ask this, but please also share this post via email to your family and friends, a retweet, or posting it on your Facebook wall. This small step in fighting Alzheimer’s is critical, and this is how you can help.
With love and hugs,
PS: In 50 years, my beautiful Angel Girl will be 66 years old. Right now 1 in 10 Americans age 65 and over have Alzheimer’s. 2/3 of those are women. Those statistics are only getting worse. I really, really want that cure to be ready when she needs it!