Queen Máxima shared a cup of tea and some comforting words with Alzheimer’s patients on Tuesday as she celebrated the 35th anniversary of Alzheimer Nederland in Giessenburg.
The Queen visited the Alzheimer Trefpunt De Til, one of the 246 cafés or “trefpunt” set up by Alzheimer Nederland around the country. The organisation set up these monthly meetings for patients, caregivers and healthcare professionals to talk about living with dementia and make connections with others dealing with the disease.
The Queen was all smiles as she arrived Tuesday in a stunning lavender dress, chatting and taking selfies with members of the public waiting outside. She was met by the director of Alzheimer Nederland, Gerjoke Wilmink; Arie Slob, chairman of the organisation’s Drechtsteden and Alblasserwaard department; and Dirk van der Borg, mayor of Molenlanden.
“We are delighted that Queen Máxima wants to honour us with a visit because of our 35th anniversary,” said Wilmink. “And we are happy that it is in a place where the people we stand up for are present.”
Approximately 280,000 people have dementia in the Netherlands and The Queen learned more about how Alzheimer Nederland is focused on working toward a future without Alzheimer’s as well as improving the quality of life for current patients. The Alzheimers cafés, such as Trefpunt De Til which she visited, play a huge role in helping patients get support, tips, and information about the disease.
The organisation, which was founded in 1984, employs 90 people in its head office in Amersfoort and provides a range of services for those with dementia and their caregivers, as well as fundraising for scientific research to help find a cure for the disease.
September is World Alzheimer’s Month and The Queen’s visit to the Alzheimer Trefpunt in Giessenburg was the start of a series of events organised by Alzheimer Nederland to honour World Alzheimer’s Day on 21 September.