Climb for Alzheimer's spotlight: Sue Sami

Sue Sami’s Family (L-R): Dave Nair, Angela Nair, Prabha Subramani, Prabhakaren Nair, Chandra Nair, Rukmani Nair, Shashi Kainth, Sue  Sami and Sudesh Nair, with Divya Nair in front.
Sue Sami’s Family (L-R): Dave Nair, Angela Nair, Prabha Subramani, Prabhakaren Nair, Chandra Nair, Rukmani Nair, Shashi Kainth, Sue Sami and Sudesh Nair, with Divya Nair in front.


“Dementia is an uphill journey,” says Sue Sami, co-chair for the volunteer organizing committee for the 2017 Climb for Alzheimer’s, taking place on September 24. “The Climb is an opportunity for British Columbians to help individuals and families affected by dementia up the mountain.”

The Climb for Alzheimer’s is a fun, invigorating hike up the Grouse Grind® – but it’s also an opportunity for people to help the Alzheimer Society of B.C. achieve our vision of a truly dementia-friendly society – where people living with the disease, their caregivers and their families are acknowledged, welcomed and included. Funds raised go towards support, education and advocacy for families on the dementia journey, and to enable research that will advance knowledge of the disease.

Sue became involved with the Climb because her family’s personal experience of the disease has made her passionate about raising awareness – particularly among the Indo-Canadian community, where there are often cultural and language barriers to families receiving support.

Sue’s father, Prabhakaren, was diagnosed with dementia after he began to experience significant challenges with his memory. While their doctor recommended that the family consider transitioning Prabhakaren into residential care, Sue and her seven siblings chose to work together and develop a plan for supporting their parents as Prabhakaren’s disease progressed.

“Five of us were able to take on looking after him,” Sue says. “We each took a day.” However, as the disease progressed and Prabhakaren’s symptoms changed, they began to experience new challenges, including wandering. Eventually, the family had to make the decision to move Prabhakaren into a care residence. Two months later he passed away.

Wanting to contribute to their father’s legacy the family has chosen to support and help educate other families on the dementia journey. Sue and her family connected to the Society and have become avid volunteers who are coming together for the Climb.

“Every day can present challenges to families affected by dementia,” Sue says. “I want to connect with a lot of people and let them know that there’s help out there.”

People living with Alzheimer’s disease or other dementias face an uphill journey every day. Passionate supporters Sue Sami and her whole family are going up the mountain to show that people don’t need to make the dementia journey alone. Participants can make the Climb or take the Summit Stroll. Who will you climb for? Register and start fundraising today.

Last Updated: 11/08/2017