The City of Sydney and Alzheimer’s Australia today joined forces to promote the healthy benefits of walking – and raise awareness of Australia’s third leading cause of death.
Alzheimer’s Australia NSW is offering a 10 per cent discount on registration to all city residents and workers for its annual Sydney Memory Walk & Jog on Sunday 14 September.
The fun day out, held during Dementia Awareness Month, raises much-needed funds to provide support, education and resources for people living with dementia in NSW and their carers.
There are an estimated 332,000 Australians with dementia. In Sydney alone there are an estimated 1,100 people with the debilitating condition, and that figure is expected to rise by 300 per cent by 2050.
Deputy Lord Mayor Robyn Kemmis said the City was investing significantly in infrastructure to make walking more accessible and interesting for residents, commuters and tourists of all abilities.
“Dementia is a devastating disease and its impact is felt right throughout our community. One person develops the condition in Australia every six minutes. That’s one of the health reasons why we are investing in creating an environment where people are encouraged to be active and walk more,” the Deputy Lord Mayor said.
“The City is investing $50 million in improving the useability and safety of the most popular walking routes in central Sydney over the next 10 years.
“We’re implementing an extensive wayfinding system to link the entire local government area and installing modern new street furniture on every street.
“Next month we will release our first ever policy on walking and in October, Sydney will welcome the world’s leading experts on walking when the City and the NSW Government host the international Walk 21 conference.
“When you create a better environment for walking, you help people’s health, reduce congestion on our roads and boost the local economy from increased foot traffic outside local retailers.”
Alzheimer’s Australia NSW CEO, The Hon. John Watkins, said walking had so many great benefits, and applauded the City of Sydney for working to encourage people to walk more, and more often.
Mr Watkins said walking had particular benefits when it came to delaying the onset of dementia.
“Not only can regular walking improve memory and thinking functions, it can also help protect against cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia,” Mr Watkins said.
The Deputy Lord Mayor urged Sydneysiders and city workers to take up the Sydney Memory Walk & Jog discount offer.
“Alzheimer’s Australia’s Sydney Memory Walk & Jog will be a great day out for the whole family, and it also seems that taking your brain for a walk is really good medicine.”
Sydney Memory Walk & Jog is on Sunday 14 September around the Bay Run at Leichhardt. Participants can choose to take part in a 2 kilometre walk, a 7.5 kilometre walk or a 7.5 kilometre run.
Alzheimer’s Australia NSW is aiming to raise $750,000 from events across the state. Bupa is the official aged care partner of the 2014 Memory Walk & Jog.
Discount registration is now open to City of Sydney residents and workers. Visit memorywalk.com.au/sydney click ‘register now’ and follow the prompts to enter promo code CityofSyd2014 for the 10 per cent discount.
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