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Swiss Re joins Alzheimer's Society in the fight against dementia

Published 18 March 2015

Swiss Re Foundation has launched its two-year UK Charity of the Year partnership with the aim of raising money for Alzheimer's Society over the course of 2015 – 2016.

Swiss Re's UK employees voted Alzheimer's Society as their Charity of the Year from a selection of charities they suggested themselves. 

Throughout the partnership, over 800 UK based staff will be raising money to support three vital dementia programmes. The first is a research project focusing on young carers of people with dementia, the second is the Clover Café in the London Borough of Wandsworth - a support café for people with dementia and their carers, and the third will cover local Alzheimer's Society support services in and around the Folkestone offices.  

Swiss Re employees have kicked off proceedings by learning more about dementia and taking part in onsite Dementia Friends sessions, the biggest ever social action movement to change perceptions of dementia. Dementia Friends is a joint initiative with Public Health England, funded by the Cabinet Office and Department of Health, which helps people to understand more about dementia and the little ways they can help. Alzheimer's Society now has one million Dementia Friends. Swiss Re are joining the movement with the aim of making as many UK staff as possible Dementia Friends, with Swiss Re's UK CEO Russell Higginbotham already having taken part. 

Funds will be collected through cake sales, quizzes, yoga classes, money box collections and raffles. Employees will take the plunge by completing big events throughout the year including: the Ben Nevis Midnight Challenge, the Snowdon Midnight Challenge, the Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenge, and the Royal Parks Half Marathon. The Senior Leadership Team will also be taking on their own big money challenge later in the year.

Russell Higginbotham, CEO Swiss Re UK, said: 

'I am delighted to welcome Alzheimer's Society as Swiss Re's new UK Charity of the Year 2015-2016. Over the next two years we aim to raise money to support people living with dementia. Dementia is a cause that resonates with our colleagues and aligns closely with our business strategy, looking at the challenge of an ageing population. I look forward to building a successful charity partnership with a lasting legacy in the community.'

Paula Robinson, Head of Corporate Partnerships at Alzheimer's Society said: 

'We are absolutely delighted that Swiss Re has chosen Alzheimer's Society as their charity partner for the next two years. With the support of Swiss Re, Alzheimer's Society will be able to reach more families affected by dementia. With 850,000 people in the UK living with dementia and that number set to increase to one million in the next decade, this is a pressing issue. We would like to thank Swiss Re for helping us to continue our work; we are thrilled to have them on board.'

- Ends -

Notes to editors:

  • 225,000 will develop dementia this year, that's one every three minutes
  • Alzheimer's Society research shows that 850,000 people in the UK have a form of dementia. In less than ten years a million people will be living with dementia. This will soar to two million people by 2051
  • Dementia costs the UK economy over £26 Billion per year. This is the equivalent of more than £30,000 per person with dementia.
  • Alzheimer's Society champions the rights of people living with dementia and the millions of people who care for them
  • Alzheimer's Society works in England, Wales and Northern Ireland
  • Alzheimer's Society supports people to live well with dementia today and funds research to find a cure for tomorrow. We rely on voluntary donations to continue our vital work. You can donate now by calling 0845 306 0898 or visiting alzheimers.org.uk
  • Alzheimer's Society provides a National Dementia Helpline, the number is 0300 222 11 22 or visit alzheimers.org.uk

Press Office 08450 744 395 Email: press@alzheimers.org.uk