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Local artist using her work to help those dealing with memory loss

Posted at 12:58 PM, Apr 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-07 13:04:17-04

NAPLES, Fla. — A local artist is using her work to help those with memory loss.

It’s thru a workshop called the ‘Art 4 Alz’ and it will be taking place tonight on Marco Island.

“I wanted to marry my love of art as an artist with the fundraising mission and vision of the Alzheimer’s Association.”

For Tammy DeCaro, art is passion. A passion— maybe— rivaled only by a desire to help others.

“We’re doing a painting workshop with all of the proceeds going towards our ‘Longest Day’ team which raises money to help with research for the Alzheimer’s Association.”

DeCaro has been involved in the Alzheimer Awareness walks for the last 15 years. When she’s not making art, she’s busy working as the executive director at Barrington Terrace Assisted Living and Memory Care.

“For me, as an artist, it was an important cause," she says. "As a health care professional, I see the benefit of this everyday with my residents, with my family member who has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and it has touched our family. I don’t know anyone who it hasn’t touched.”

In fact, according to the Alzheimer’s Association, more than 6 million Americans are living with the memory loss disease.

“When you look at the prevalence, 58 million people this year will have or know someone who has Alzheimer’s and that’s only one type of dementia.”

DeCaro says the act of creating art helps the bearer cope with their symptoms. Providing a sense of relief and release.

"It allows you to tap into those feelings and look at how does creating this beach art help me feel serene," says DeCaro. "If calmness and serenity is what I’m going for, this is what I’m looking for.”

The workshop may provide relief but it’s also serving a dual purpose, letting those who are affected by Alzheimer’s know that help is available.

“We just need to get that message out that there are resources for people, they’re not alone, and that there are great support groups available to both the person with Alzheimer’s as well as the family so that they can help find the support system that they need," said DeCaro. "And, ultimately, that we can raise money for research and find a cure for this disease.”

Fighting a disease one paint swab at a time

There’s still time to sign up for tonight’s workshop. You can find more information online right here. You can learn more about Tammy's artwork right here.