How to make a difference

What is the best way to donate to Alzheimer’s research?  What organizations have the best reputation for their use of donated funds?

Making A Difference

Dear Making A Difference,
I don’t think there is a standard answer for this, because with all donations, one needs to do some personal homework that starts by answering some questions about your personal agenda.  Think about what you want to happen with the money you donate:

  • Do you want to affect only scientific research?
  • Do you want to donate to caregiver impact, research on care alternatives, or research on related disorders such as vascular dementia? 
  • Do you want to donate time as well as money?  This can help extend funds for your favorite charities.
  • Do you want your donation to be applied regionally or nationally?


With these questions answered, I would recommend going online and starting with the Alzheimer’s Association and Alzheimer’s Foundation.  Visit your local Area Agency on Aging, because some of the grants they facilitate need matching funding to provide support for an Alzheimer’s patient and caregiver, or to help with an opportunity to participate in medical or research studies.


There are many other research organizations that just look at specific aspects of Alzheimer’s disease and its many related disorders.  Get specific with your website searches; instead of “Alzheimer’s,” search for donation opportunities related to stroke and vascular organizations, Lewy Body Dementia, and others.  There are a lot of choices to research. Check with your state or local medical school, or any memory center to see what they need to enhance research programs or make them possible.  Find out what the philosophy, funding, and purpose of an organization is, and determine how it fits into your vision and where you feel you can make the most difference in accordance with your goals.  There are endless possibilities, as well as a great need for money.  Any organization that claims to do research should be able to provide you with the details on how the donated funds are used for its research.  Once you have gathered this information the best place for your funds should be apparent.