|Annie Lennox supports more |
than 30 different charities
When you look on the site and find out how many celebrities have nailed their colours to the mast of Alzheimer's - you get ten. Just ten. Yet dementia is one of the most pressing issues in the western world. So my question 'are celebrities ashamed?' is a valid one. Are they not willing to put their name to a charity that deals with addressing a challenge that very possibly faces us all? At least 50% of the UK population know or have a relative with dementia, and something like one in three over 65 will die with a dementia related illness over the next thirty years. So why aren't there more high profile individuals who support research and care for dementia? I don't suppose any celebrities will pipe up and respond to my question.
My thoughts are - and these are just my personal thoughts - that they are if not ashamed, perhaps embarrassed. I think most people have a cautious reaction to dementia because the symptoms manifest in behaviour change. Dementia patients are very often fit and healthy - yet their behaviour and cognitive abilities make them 'difficult' to manage in a society where we have a culture that aspires to youth, health, beauty and (I think there is irony here) celebrity.
|Sir Terry Pratchett|
But I am not laying the blame for lack of public understanding of dementia at the feet of celebrities or any one part of society. Every single one of us must look into our own hearts. There are very few of us who will not be coming into contact with it over the next thirty years.
Alzheimer's Research UK
Look to the Stars
Photographs - from Look to the Stars website