A Dedicated Crusader
Anne Bashkiroff knows the heartache, loneliness and financial burden of Alzheimer Disease. Her dear husband, Sasha, suffered for nine years with this terrible brain and soul damaging illness. Anne learned that the family suffers along with the patient and she became commited to change the system that all too often ignores the sweeping ramifications of a long term "silent" illness. Over 13 million adults and their families suffer together with these dreadful diseases.
Many nursing homes do not want to care for Alzheimer patients (they are often difficult and disruptive). Keeping the patient at home demands the constant care of the family (relief is never at hand and the cost is enormous). Anne knew something must be changed to help everyone.
Her strength and dedication led her to help establish the Family Survival Project, a group that obtained the first legislation in the country to provide financial, legal, medical and personal assistance for low cost respite care in the home for victims of brain damage. The group's success now works as a role model for dozens of similar organization throughout the United States. Assemblyman Art Agnos, inspired by Anne, introduced the first legislation in California.
Through continuing action, Anne has opened the door for human understanding and support for the disease that is all-too-often swept away by fear.