We are endlessly grateful to our volunteers for giving their time to better the lives of those impacted by Alzheimer’s and other dementias. Our volunteers are truly the heart of the Alzheimer’s Association here in North Carolina.
In honor of National Volunteer Week 2021, we’ll be spotlighting a different volunteer from our Chapter each day. Today we are featuring…
TOM & CARI BERGER
What brought you to volunteer with the Alzheimer’s Association?
Like so many of us, I[Tom] was blessed with an all-star mother, truly one of the best. At the time of her death in 2013, my mother also had dementia. I’ve known Katherine Lambert personally and professionally for years. When Katherine joined the Alzheimer’s Association in 2014, I contacted her to see how I could get involved.
What volunteer role(s) do you have with the Association?
I serve on the Board for Western Carolina Chapter and in 2020 my wife, Cari, and I were asked to serve as Memory Gala Co-Chairs. We are serving a repeat role in 2021.
What do you enjoy most about your volunteer role?
Spreading hope about this catastrophic disease. We are dumbfounded by how many people are touched by this disease (and other forms of dementia). The diagnosis can be mind-numbing (I know), but the Association is advocating for all of us. They are funding groundbreaking research. They are driving federal, state and local awareness. They are breaking down barriers to care and promoting early detection.
What piece of your role do you feel makes the biggest impact?
Fundraising. People want to help because they’ve been touched by this disease and understand the debilitating effect it has on the patient, the caregiver(s) and the family.
If someone were considering volunteering with the Association, what would you say to them?
Consider your strengths and get involved. All are welcome to this ever-growing table. We need you and can use you immediately. We are hopeful that a cure and our first survivor are in our sights.