A Letter from our President & Board Chair:

While 2020 was full of challenges, we are humbled by your continued support. Thank you to everyone who gave what you could during this difficult year, whether it was your time, your dollars, or your empathy.

We closed our physical offices on March 13th, as soon as there was community spread of COVID-19 in San Diego County. It was a difficult decision, but it was the correct one. The entire team rose to the challenge, moving our programs online at lightning speed. We even added some new services, specifically designed to combat isolation while social distancing.

As the country made historic strides toward social justice, we also came together for some tough conversations. At Alzheimer’s San Diego, we see how disparities in healthcare impact people’s lives every day. We looked inward to evaluate our own reach and equity – and recognized we need to do better. (You can read about our new Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee here.)

Finally, we are excited to share our new tagline as an organization: Brain Health for All. This is one of many thoughtful language changes being made in the spirit of inclusivity. We want to make it clear we’re here not only for people living with Alzheimer’s disease, but also to serve those with other dementias, mild cognitive impairment, traumatic brain injury, their care partners, and anyone who wants to learn more about brain health. Thank you for your continued support. Together, we have weathered the storm of 2020… and 2021 is already looking brighter.

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Board of Directors

Derrick Walsh, Board Chair
Bari Berkman
Carlo Cecchetto
Linda Cho
Dr. Abraham Chyung
Dani Dawson
Sheriff Bill Gore
Susan Guerra
Vince Kingsley

Herb Liberman
Marcea Lloyd
Claudia Mazanec
Jill Mendlen
Ann Owens
Dennis Schoville
Bill Smith
Judy Wenker

Rides4ALZ & Walk4ALZ go virtual

Innovation & Impact

The last day of in-person programs was March 10, 2020. Our team acted quickly to inform our clients and get our services moved online.

Check out our Webinar Library

Community Support & Commitment

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
We often say that when you’ve met one person living with dementia… you’ve met one person living with dementia. That’s why we celebrate the things that make our team as unique as the people we serve. Alzheimer’s San Diego is a safe and inclusive space. We are committed to reflecting the rich diversity of our community, and to holding ourselves accountable. Our Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee ensures these words are put into practice.

Our ultimate goal is to make sure we reach people where they are, and for the diversity of our clients to reflect the diversity of San Diego County. To read the committee’s specific plan and action items, click the button below.

Learn about Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Community Partners

A-1 Storage
ActivCare Living, Inc.
Alpine View Lodge
A.M. Ortega
Arthur N. Rupe Foundation
Axos Bank
Burns & McDonnell
Charles Schwab
Coastal Community Foundation
Cordoba Corporation

County of San Diego
David C. Copley Foundation
Dr. Seuss Foundation
Excell Research
GIS Surveyors, INC
Grossmont Healthcare District
Home Instead
Icon Utility Services
Indian Motorcycle of San Diego
Ionis Pharmaceutical

Jingoli Power, LLC
Merica Services
Meruelo Enterprises Inc
PAR Electrical Contractors Inc.
Patriot General
Rancho Bernardo Community
San Diego Foundation
San Diego Gas & Electric

SDSU Research Foundation
Sharp Mesa Vista
Stellar Care
Southland Electric, Inc
The Neurology Center
of Southern California
USC Alzheimer’s Therapeutic
Research Institute
Withington Foundation
Woolway Family Foundation

VITALZ (Volunteers in Touch) launched in August 2020 to increase community support during the pandemic. More than 84,000 people in San Diego County are living with dementia – and 1 out of 4 live alone. In this program, specially trained volunteers make regular phone calls to check in, provide 15-20 minutes of socialization, and give reminders about upcoming appointments and food deliveries.

VITALZ can also serve as a safety net. If the person living with dementia does not answer a scheduled call after a few tries, the volunteer will then call their emergency contacts so they can check in and make sure the person is safe.

Late last year, a woman called to inquire about enrolling her mother in VITALZ. Her mother, Gerta, was not only reluctant to join the program, but also only spoke German. The team reassured the daughter that they would do everything they could to not only find a German-speaking volunteer but they would work closely with the volunteer to coach her on how to make the visits successful.

After just a week, Alzheimer’s San Diego matched Gerta with Heidi – a German-speaking volunteer all the way in Poland! The first couple of calls didn’t go well, but Heidi persisted, talking with the VITALZ team and Gerta’s daughter to discuss ways she might be more effective in connecting with her. After just a few more tries, Gerta not only started enjoying the calls, but began considering Heidi a friend and said she looked forward to talking with her each week.

“She proposed we could start ‘dutzing’ one another, in other words I now call her by her first name,” Heidi shares. “She seemed high-spirited and recognized me right away, which was really touching. She invited me to visit her, if I am ever in California.”

“Your services have been vital
to my sisters and me.

We are deeply grateful for Alzheimer’s San Diego
and all the staff. Keep up the good fight.”