UPDATE: MORE than $1000 was raised to help fight dementia in an inaugural charity event at Bill Paterson Oval today.
Ipswich Hospital administration officer Neradene Savuro oragnised the 5km Memory Walk and Jog, held in Ipswich today.
The fundraiser was well supported and Ms Savuro said the event would be even bigger and better next year.
"We managed to raise $1161.60 both online and on the day registration's to each an every family and staff member your donations are appreciated," she said on the event Facebook page.
"They will be passed onto Alzheimer's Australia, to keep providing the amazing support they do to families all over Australia!"
IT'S an incurable set of diseases that steals memories, independence and the ability to live a normal life, and it's affecting more people in Ipswich than you might realise.
Registered nurse Claire Robertson and administration officer Neradene Savuro see the impact dementia has on sufferers and their families every day.
That's why the pair is calling for people to register for the inaugural 5km Memory Walk and Jog this Sunday to raise funds for Alzheimer's Australia.
Neradene and Claire work in Ward 7C, the Acute Care of the Elderley Ward at Ipswich Hospital. It's one of the only wards specifically for people with dementia in the region.
Neradene said dementia was a critical disease in Ipswich.
"Not many people know how many of our patients are local. Ipswich is a big city and there are a lot of people with dementia, not a lot of people know that," she said.
"The disease is a huge, overwhelming process and you see how it affects people and their families on a day to day basis.
"We specialise in dementia based care here on our ward and feel this event would bring more light to what people with dementia are going through."
Claire said the day wasn't about the physical challenge, but about the community coming together.
"It's not a triathlon. People can walk or run or simply just donate," she said.
"We want to encourage people of all ages to come along. It's such an important cause.
"In a way dementia is like death. People go through the grieving process of not accepting it, then they can feel angry or depressed."
She said the ward was consistently filled with between 15-27 people with some even staying as long as three months while their families organised alternative care.
"Dementia presents itself differently in different people but generally those with it find it hard to accept that they will have to rely on others more," she said.
"It's tough for them and tough on their families."
The 5km Memory Walk and Jog will be held this Sunday from 7.30am-noon at Bill Paterson Oval in Limestone Park and will include a sausage sizzle.
Entry costs a $15 donation for adults, $10 for seniors $5 for children and is free for under fives.
Participants are asked to wear yellow to raise awareness for dementia.
"It would be greatly appreciated by people living with dementia both now and in the future," Neradene said.
For more visit http://ipswichmemorywalk. gofundraise.com.au or phone 0432 419 073.