When she was a young child, Esha Sunthankar realized that her grandmother, Kalan, was not the same person that she used to be. Esha didn’t get to see her grandmother often, since she lived in India, but Esha still realized that things were changing. Her grandmother had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease. “It was hard seeing her forget and stop doing the things that she used to enjoy doing” says Esha. Kalan passed away in 2011, but her memory lives on. Today Esha is a bright and cheerful 13-year-old 8th-grader. Recently she participated in a project at school called “Project Impact.” For this assignment Esha and her partner (MacKenzie – another student who’s great-grandmother is currently living with Alzheimer’s Disease) chose to focus on Alzheimer’s Disease. They created a project board and wrote a report about Alzheimer’s Disease. Esha says that through her research she learned that Alzheimer’s was a type of dementia and was surprised at the prevalence of the disease. “I thought it was kind of a rare disease, but now I know that it is really common.” Next, they participated in “Market Day” where they shared brochures and information with all of the students in their school and sold items to raise money for their cause. Esha and her mother made handmade Alzheimer’s Awareness ribbons (see below) to sell along with t-shirts and bracelets. Esha and MacKenzie raised the most of any individual group – $250 – which they donated to the Alzheimer’s Association, Georgia Chapter.
We are THRILLED and so proud to see Esha’s accomplishments and dedication to increasing awareness about Alzheimer’s Disease to her peer group. It is so encouraging to see such a young generation take an interest in joining the fight to End Alzheimer’s ! Thank you Esha and MacKenzie, you’re an inspiration to us all!