University of the Highlands and Islands staff have selected Alzheimer Scotland as their charity of the year. Colleagues will take part in a range of activities throughout 2020 to raise funds for the organisation, including bake sales, sporting challenges and raffles.

The university’s social committee, which oversees fundraising efforts, invited Alzheimer Scotland’s Lead Locality Fundraiser Michael Parkes to speak at a recent staff meeting. Michael said: “It is a huge honour and privilege for Alzheimer Scotland to be the University of the Highlands and Islands’ charity of the year for 2020 during our 40th anniversary year. With over 90,000 people living with dementia in Scotland and a rising number of people receiving a diagnosis, this is the biggest public health priority of our time.

“Alzheimer Scotland provides a diverse range of dementia-specific activities, support and care for people across Scotland, including a 24-hour freephone helpline (0808 808 3000), but we wouldn’t be able to provide these vital services without the generous support of the people of Scotland.

“Across the Highlands our Dementia Resource Centres in Inverness, Dingwall and Tain to our Day Care Centres in Nairn and Woodlands, Inverness, all provide supports for people living with dementia, their carers and families. Groups such as our Dementia Cafes, Football Memories and Carer Groups aim to bring people together in a safe and friendly environment and support our vision that nobody should face dementia alone. We are thrilled to work alongside the university to help increase awareness of dementia and we are looking forward to a busy calendar of fundraising events and activities over the course of year.”

The university’s Principal and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Crichton Lang, also welcomed the news, saying: “We are delighted to be supporting Alzheimer Scotland as our charity of the year. This is an important area which impacts many people at some stage and the work of Alzheimer Scotland is hugely beneficial to individuals and their families dealing with these health issues. The university has a wide portfolio of training and research in health and social care relevant to our region and this further strengthens our relationship with Alzheimer Scotland.” 

Photo (left to right): Lindsey Moodie and Jessica Taylor from the university’s social committee, Michael Parkes and Kenny Wright from Alzheimer Scotland, and Principal and Vice-Chancellor Professor Crichton Lang.