A cup of positive - research and tea
By Karen Andersen Yates, Chairperson for the Friends Committee of the HOPE Foundation
It really was a “Cup of Positive” when the Friends of The HOPE Foundation gathered on the last Sunday afternoon of March to meet three HOPE scholars, while sipping tea and enjoying delicious small cakes and savouries.
Karen Mumme was the first presenter. She was also the first recipient of HOPE’s Small Project Grant. It was after she received it, she became aware of the vacancy of the Executive Officer at HOPE and was later appointed. We welcome Karen to this position and look forward to working with her. Karen’s presentation started of with an object lesson, with carrots, beetroot, greens, protein and grains etc illustrating the Ministry of Health’s dietary guidelines, the basis of her research. She deveolped an index from the guidelines, which is able to assess the daily diet and can be used in research and a clinical setting. Her focus was the diet of older New Zealanders. Karen shared a research project using this tool.
In response to the question ”what foods are important to mainatin a healthy brain, as we age?” The messgae was very clear, “What is good for the heart is good for the brain”.
Annabel Grant’s research project is focused on declining cognition and social inclusion. Having social contact with others is important for the continued well being with dementia, at what ever stage. Annabel suggested that being open about any memory loss, when in company or meeting new people in a social setting makes for better relationships. It will be good to hear her conclusions when the research is complete.
Conor Nelson was a summer student in 2019/20 and is now in the second year of his PhD, focusing on immune therapy that could be used in arresting chronic destructive brain diseases, such as Hunting’s Chorea and dementia. He spoke enthusiastically of his laborative work. For some of us it was perhaps somewhat beyond our framework of knowledge but the wonderful thing is that people like Conor is investing his abilities and passion mixed with ethics, in a field that will have impact in the future and assist people with conditions involving cognititve decline.
All of us in the room were stimulated and went home having been exposed to new knowledge and gained new learnings and perhaps new contacts. That is afterall one way of defending against cognitive decline.
Thank you to all who supported this event. We look forward to seeing you at another Friends of The HOPE Foundation event.
You can also help by
- Spreading the word about what we do / share this newsletter
- Donating your time to the Friends Supporters to help with fundraising and committee work
- Encouraging your children and grandchildren to invest in their futures by donating time and money (a baby girl born today has a 1 in 3 chance of living to 100 , a boy 1 in 4 and is likely to be fitter and healthier–think about the implications of that)
- Consider a bequest