Alzheimer’s has been in my life since middle school. My grandmother, Lilly, suffered from the devastating disease during the 1980s. I remember my family blaming everything from the aluminum pots to her little saccharin pills. She remained at home with my grandfather for many years until she was placed in a nursing home behind the hospital.
I remember our visits and being called by a different name every time I saw her. When an opportunity was given to me to volunteer at Joe’s Club, I jumped at it. Within a few days, I went from volunteer to part-time employee to full time program director. And today, it’s proud leader.
In the past nine years, I have seen BAFI flourish and become a beacon in the Brevard County nonprofit landscape. With rock solid community partners like Brevard County Commissioners, United Way, SCAT, and many more, BAFI is able to serve thousands of families each year. And truly, no one who needs services is turned away.
BAFI’s appreciation expands beyond the Space Coast. In 2010, Safe-Ride was awarded as the Nation’s Top Alzheimer’s Transportation system in the nation. And then two years later, BAFI was named the Most Innovative Adult Day Care in the country.
We must be doing something right.
Every Alzheimer’s story is unique. Each family has a tale of woes to tell. Each day, I watch the clients come in and out of Joe’s Club and I see the dedicated team here making a difference in so many lives.
I am proud of the work they do. Long hours are expected. Compassion is required. And acceptance that you will never win an argument with an Alzheimer’s client. And if somehow you win, you will have to rehash it again …. in five minutes.
Come visit our facility, take a tour, you will not be disappointed.
Timothy Timmermann, Jr.