BEHIND THE SCENES AT AFA TORREVIEJA
By Keith Nicol / 2012-02-11 18:04:16
SINCE 2004, The Association of Friends and Relatives of Alzheimer's Sufferers in Torrevieja (AFA Torrevieja) has been providing an invaluable service to those suffering from Alzheimer’s and their families.
On Friday their department heads and representatives from Torrevieja’s Town Hall invited the press to hear about their fund raising activities and to explain just what their funding is spent on in the community. As an NGO, this non-profit association is totally dependent upon donations to continue their work and their activities never cease so there is always a need for contributions and support.
AFA Torrevieja is comprised of 264 members, who collaborate in conjunction with public and private organizations to support all the activities carried out in the association. In a nutshell, their main goal is to improve the quality of life of sufferers and their relatives. In March, 2007, AFA took up residence, at Prolongación Avenida de la Estación nº 1, 03185 Torrevieja (Alicante), beside the Salt Interpretation Centre and the park, which houses the old RENFE Station.
Although based in Torrevieja the Association carries out its activities throughout a wide range of municipalities including Torrevieja, Guardarmar del Segura, Los Montesinos, La Mata, San Miguel de Salinas, Pilar de la Horadada, Rojales and Ciudad Quesada.
As explained in detail, due to the tremendous increase of Alzheimer's patients in the region, AFA, together with the Town Hall of Torrevieja, is working towards the goal of building a multidisciplinary centre, composing of different buildings whose fundamental objective is to remain fully interconnected. Each building is conceived to deal with a single pathology, thus not only assisting Alzheimer's patients but also other types of dementia, mental illness, physical and mental disability. Moreover, all the buildings and professionals will share experiences and projects.
On a day to day basis, money donated to AFA Torrevieja, raised through their Charity Shop or fund raising activities goes towards providing care for sufferers and their families, nursing staff, running costs, administration and upkeep of their facilities. They have social workers who help with the applications for assistances and grants, they give advice to the families of sufferers and provide psychological support along with providing respite for home carers.
The sufferers receive such support as occupational therapy, training or retraining in daily life activities, work therapy through handworks and music-therapy plus physiotherapy, geriatric gymnastics, customized treatment, psycho mobility, cognitive stimulation and importantly, hygiene. The centre also provides transport and has a canteen, dinning area.
Since June 2009, in conjunction with Age Concern Torrevieja, a satellite centre is also in use in La Siesta. At Age Concern, they have a small space to provide local services and advice, especially to the International community and for those showing the early stages of Alzheimer’s or dementia.
Much research is being done globally towards looking for the causes of and cures for Alzheimer’s, which can stricken anyone elderly at any time. Next week, on Monday February 20, at 8.00pm in Torrevieja’s Music Palace, there is a presentation entitled: ‘Alzheimer’s: Who Cares?’ Everyone is invited to the film show and meeting that is designed to help you understand how to cope with partners, friends and neighbours who have Dementia.
Treasurer Matilde Sanchez said “AFA Alzheimer’s Association Torrevieja is available for advice and support. We rely on voluntary donations to continue our vital work in our day centre and now have a “Buy a Brick” campaign to raise money to build a much needed residential care home for sufferers.”
If you need help or advice, or feel you can contribute, please visit AFA shop in Calle Maestro Francisco Valejos in the centre of Torrevieja close to the PROP and the Inmaculada Church or their headquarters in the AFA Centre in Avenida de La Estacion. You can also call Matilde Sanchez on 647119991 or Judy Ferris on 610082593. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org of phone them direct 966702500 - Fax: 966702203. More information is also available on their web site: www.afatorrevieja.es