The Laurel Highlands Alzheimer’s Foundation (LHAF), which is an affiliate of the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, is an all-volunteer nonprofit organization dedicated to helping area families affected by all forms of dementia. 1889 Foundation is proud to support the LHAF with an annual grant of $25,000.

A major service the LHAF provides is respite care at no charge to the family, so that families who are caring for a dementia patient at home can have a break. LHAF will pay for up to 30 hours of respite care per family, per month.

“Dementia patients need 24-hour care, and it’s critical that caregivers have the opportunity to take time for themselves,” explains Marie Goff, chair of the LHAF. “Currently, we are providing 22 families with respite care every month.”

In addition, the LHAF offers a support group for dementia patients and their family members. It meets the second Monday of each month from 7:00-9:00 pm at Conemaugh East Hills. Participants get the chance to share concerns, struggles, and successes, and often a guest speaker presents a topic of interest. Goff says that meetings typically attract 15-30 people.

Finally, the organization offers free early dementia screenings on a regular basis.

“Our board meets monthly to make sure we are allocating funds in the best way possible,” Goff explains. “Respite care is expensive, but so important. 1889 Foundation helps make it possible for us to offer this invaluable service.”

Families who would like to inquire about LHAF services are invited to attend a support group meeting, or call the organization’s answering service at 814-533-8800.