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The Alzheimer's Alliance Tri-State Area was recently awarded a $5,000 grant from the Alzheimer's Foundation of America to provide respite care services for families affected by Alzheimer's and other dementia-related illnesses.

"We are honored to be awarded a 2019 Milton & Phyllis Berg Respite Care Grant. This grant will allow us to continue to provide much-needed respite care to families in our service area. Through supporting and improving the lives of caregivers, research shows that they are not only empowered to continue to care for their loved one, but it also extends their lives. Statistics indicate each day of respite adds 23 days to a caregiver's life," said Terrie Arnold, Alzheimer's Alliance executive director.

Alzheimer's Alliance Tri-State Area was one of 15 organizations in nine states to receive grants as part of the AFA's program.

The Alzheimer's Alliance serves more than 17,000 people in its 22-county service area in Texas, Arkansas and Oklahoma.

The Day Respite Center offers a place for caregivers to bring their loved ones that provides cognitive stimulation and socialization in a safe environment and enjoyable activities such as music and crafts, while allowing the caregivers a day to rest. The program also provides support groups, education and community resources to caregivers.

"As the incidence of Alzheimer's disease continues to grow, we need to remember that it has a tremendous impact not only on those living with the disease but the caregivers as well," said Barry Berg, AFA board treasurer.

"It is a tremendous responsibility for caregivers. It is important for them to be able to take time for themselves, maintain their own health and recharge so that they can provide the best quality care to their loved ones."

Caregivers who need information about respite care services can contact AFA's helpline at 866-232-8484 and speak with a licensed social worker or connect through AFA's website, alzfdn.org. The Helpline is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday and Sunday.

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