Hilarity for Charity®, a movement established with the Alzheimer’s Association®, led by actors and writers Lauren Miller Rogen and Seth Rogen to inspire change and raise awareness of Alzheimer’s disease among the millennial generation, will partner with Home Instead Senior Care®, to offer grants for in-home care services to eligible U.S. and Canadian families through the Alzheimer’s and Dementia Care Relief Grant Program. Care will be provided by professionals trained in how to most effectively and compassionately assist individuals with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. The new partnership will provide much-needed help for families living with Alzheimer’s disease.
A devastating disease for the patient, Alzheimer’s can also be a traumatic, life-altering experience for the 15 million friends and families who act as unpaid caregivers for their loved ones while juggling full-time jobs, raising children and maintaining their own health.
As part of the partnership, United States- and Canada-based Home Instead Senior Care franchise owners have pledged more than 37,000 hours of in-home care services, valued at $740,000, to supplement the monetary funding provided by Hilarity for Charity for the Alzheimer’s Care Grant Program.
“My wife and I have experienced firsthand the devastating toll Alzheimer’s takes on all members of a family,” said Rogen, whose mother-in-law was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s at the age of 55. “While we continue to raise money that will hopefully, one day, lead to a cure, we want to be able to improve the quality of life for families who are struggling to cope with its many challenges today. Even just a few hours of help a week can provide a welcome break and peace of mind for families.”
Jeff Huber, president of Home Instead Senior Care, added: “Care support is a critical component of a comprehensive care plan for the nearly 6 million North American’s living with Alzheimer’s disease today. Together with Hilarity for Charity and the Alzheimer’s Association, we are connecting families with our professional CAREGiversSM who are equipped with specialized training and deep expertise in caring for Alzheimer’s patients. This program will have a substantial impact on the millions of families living with this disease.”
Family caregivers face many fiscal, physical and mental challenges. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, nearly 60 percent of Alzheimer’s and dementia caregivers rate the emotional stress of caregiving as high or very high, and more than one-third report symptoms of depression. More than 70 percent of working caregivers suffer work-related difficulties, and more than half of caregivers report declining health since they’ve prioritized the care of their loved ones and neglected their own health. As a result, many chronic conditions such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes occur at nearly twice the rate among family caregivers.
For family caregivers, in-home care provides a reprieve from the stresses and responsibilities of caregiving, while their loved one continues to receive quality care in a safe environment. This time allows for other neglected personal needs, such as errands or appointments, or even just a chance to relax and spend time with family and friends. This brief break prepares family caregivers to better fulfill their own role, as they return to caregiving after having an opportunity to rest and/or address their other commitments. The outside support also strengthens the relationship between caregiver and care recipient. A study conducted by the Alzheimer’s Association with Alzheimer’s family caregivers found that 72 percent of the family caregivers who used paid in-home care rated their relationships with the seniors as “good” or “very good,” while only 58 percent of those whose seniors were not using such services did so. However, despite its clear positive effects, only 12 percent of family caregivers have used respite care services.
Angela Geiger, chief strategy officer of the Alzheimer’s Association, said: “The Alzheimer’s Association is proud to work with Lauren and Seth on Hilarity for Charity. Introducing this disease to a new generation is important for those impacted with the disease today and for future progress. Care support for families is critical and can make an enormous difference, and Home Instead’s commitment to these families is impressive.”
Lauren Miller Rogen said: “With no proven way to prevent, cure or even slow the progression of Alzheimer’s, and an increasing number of diagnoses, we know that the number of families needing support services is only going to grow. We hope to ‘Share the Care’ by helping as many families as possible with this program.”