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MetLife Foundation Awards $815,000 to Alzheimer's Association for Hispanic Outreach and Safety Initiatives

Friday, April 4, 2008 General News J E 4
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CHICAGO, April 3, 2008 Recognizing theescalating number of Alzheimer's cases in the U.S., MetLife Foundation hasawarded two grants to the Alzheimer's Association, totaling $815,000, tosupport educational outreach to the Hispanic community and training foremergency responders who encounter those with Alzheimer's and dementia intheir work. MetLife Foundation is a longtime funder of research, advocacy andprogramming around Alzheimer's disease and has been providing grant support tothe Alzheimer's Association for more than two decades.

The Hispanic outreach grant of $400,000 will continue to fund effortspreviously supported by MetLife Foundation. The grant will fund an extensivemedia and outreach campaign to the Hispanic population that will include radioand Internet messaging. Further, it will include the introduction of a FamilyCaregiver Resource Kit using existing and new Spanish-language educationalmaterials that raise awareness about the disease. The general public will beable to order the kit online and by phone through a toll-free, bilingual line.

Research suggests that Hispanics are at greater risk for Alzheimer'sdisease along with other health problems now linked to Alzheimer's, includingdiabetes, heart and vascular disease. With the Hispanic population growing ata 3.4 percent rate, the highest rate of any minority group, the incidence ofAlzheimer's disease in this population is projected to increase by 600 percentby 2050.

MetLife Foundation's award of $415,000 for the Emergency RespondersOutreach Initiative will support the development of a national trainingprogram for emergency responders, including law enforcement officers,firefighters, emergency medical technicians (EMTs), and others. Funds will beused by the Alzheimer's Association to update and enhance existing trainingresources, including a DVD, a program curriculum, tip cards and othermaterials for first responders. The Alzheimer's Association and its network of77 chapters use these items to train emergency personnel on Alzheimer'sissues, such as how to communicate with someone who has Alzheimer's ordementia, and on caregiver stress and safety issues. The information focuseson specific safety areas like wandering, impaired driving, gun safety,shoplifting, abuse and neglect, and disaster preparedness. The tools will alsoincorporate a primer on the MedicAlert(R) and Alzheimer's Association SafeReturn(R) programs.

"We hope to make the challenging job of being an emergency responder a biteasier," said Julie Sipchen, associate director, Safety Services for theAlzheimer's Association. "These tools will strengthen the partnership betweenour chapters and those in the community who are working to keep people safeand supported."

"Alzheimer's affects millions of individuals, and the Alzheimer'sAssociation is a leading resource for the general public for accurateinformation about the disease," said Sibyl Jacobson, president and CEO ofMetLife Foundation. "MetLife Foundation is pleased to support theseinitiatives, which will provide much-needed resources to communities acrossthe country."

About the Alzheimer's Association

The Alzheimer's Association is the leading voluntary health organizationin Alzheimer care, support and research. Its mission is to eliminateAlzheimer's disease through the advancement of research; to provide andenhance care and support for all affected; and to reduce the risk of dementiathrough the promotion of brain health. Its vision is a world withoutAlzheimer's. For more information, visit www.alz.org.

About MetLife Foundation

MetLife Foundation has supported Alzheimer's disease research and outreachactivities for more than 20 years. MetLife Foundation has awarded over $11million in grants through its Awards for Medical Research in Alzheimer'sdisease program. It also has a long history of providing support to theAlzhei
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