HOPE Participant Appreciation Brunch
Funded by the National Institute on Aging, the Health Outreach Program for the Elderly (HOPE) study evaluates memory and thinking abilities of older adults throughout their lives. The HOPE study serves as the Boston University Alzheimer’s Disease Center (BU ADC) research registry and includes approximately 500 participants, all of whom agree to be contacted for recruitment into other BU ADC-approved studies. On June 5th, 2009, the HOPE study held its participant appreciation event, the HOPE Brunch, at the Marriot hotel in Newton, MA, with over 200 people in attendance.
The purpose of the brunch was to recognize participants for their valued involvement in the HOPE study and to provide the latest updates on Alzheimer’s disease (AD) research. According to Eric Steinberg, HOPE study project manager, “It’s very heartening for volunteers who are committed to the fight against AD to come together for an educational experience.”
The event began with introductions from Mr. Steinberg, BU ADC Director Dr. Neil Kowall, and Mr. Michael Kincade, who serves as Safety Services and Community Programs Manager for the Massachusetts/New Hampshire Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. The program continued with short presentations from a panel of BU ADC researchers that focused on the latest research on AD prevention and treatment methods, the results of the HOPE satisfaction survey, and scientific advances that have resulted directly from the participation and dedication of HOPE participants. Dr. Ann McKee, BU ADC Neuropathology Core Director, elaborated on the purpose of brain donation in AD research. HOPE participant Ms. Phyllis Eliasberg then read a touching letter that she had written to her sons about her decision to participate in the BU ADC brain donation program.
Throughout the brunch, raffles were held with prizes, and certificates of distinction were awarded to individuals for participation in the HOPE study for six years or longer. The BU ADC would like to extend a sincere thank you to everyone who attended the brunch.