When Diann Bates was diagnosed with younger-onset Alzheimer’s three years ago at the age of 47, she decided that she would not let the disease define her.
Alzheimer’s WA’s Dementia Advocate Diann Bates recently reflected on her diagnosis by sharing her story as key note speaker at The ‘We’ in Dementia Symposium and also for a Dementia Awareness Month feature for Community News.
In the inspirational story by Lisa Thomas that appeared in The Advocate, Diann explains how she focused on remaining positive after receiving her diagnosis at only 47 years of age and will not let this diagnosis define who she is.
Diann describes how the support she has received from Alzheimer’s WA has greatly helped her and her family by connecting them with others in a similar situation and assisting her to live in the moment through support programs such as art therapy.
One way in which Alzheimer’s WA has helped Diann connect with others and remain positive is through the ‘Dementia Advocate Program’ which she has recently joined. The Advocate Program aims to make a positive difference in the community by providing a voice for people living with dementia and their families.
Through sharing their stories and having their voices heard, Advocates help raise awareness of the impact dementia can have on families, increase understanding in the wider community about dementia and also help reduce the stigma that is often associated.
Read the full story in The Advocate.
Learn more about the Dementia Advocate Program.