Alzheimer’s Research UK and Ricoh in powerful awareness campaign to explain diseases behind dementia
The films mark a new chapter for the Dementia Uncovered campaign, which launched last year with a compelling film featuring acclaimed actor Simon Pegg. Using Ricoh’s 3D printing technology, the film helped show the physical nature of Alzheimer’s disease, which shrinks the brain at four times the rate of healthy ageing.
To build on this message, Alzheimer’s Research UK and Ricoh worked with Connected Pictures and director Gemma Brady, known for her work on 24 Hours in A&E, to develop a suite of eight new films. These films explore the different diseases that cause dementia, the different ways in which these diseases affect people, and the research taking place to find answers. The campaign also sees the re-release of the original Dementia Uncovered film.
As the most common cause of dementia, Alzheimer’s disease is well recognised, but other causes of dementia receive less public attention. Dementia Uncovered explores the impact of Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, frontotemporal dementia, and dementia with Lewy bodies. By telling the stories of families affected and scientists working at the forefront of research, the campaign highlights the reality and complexity of dementia and the hope that lies in research.
One of the people featured in the campaign is Ricoh employee Themiya Haththotuwa, whose father Sena has dementia with Lewy bodies. The disease causes distressing symptoms including hallucinations, and problems with movement similar to those seen in Parkinson’s. It’s thought to affect around 100,000 people in the UK.
Themiya says: “Alzheimer’s Research UK has been Ricoh’s charity partner for over two years now and it’s been wonderful to be able to contribute to the charity’s work through fundraising challenges. But when the opportunity came up to support this campaign by telling our family’s story, I knew I wanted to get involved.
“My father was always someone I could depend on when I was growing up, and to see the impact this disease is having on him has been hugely difficult. I would love to see a treatment that could help people like my father, and I’m so proud to be part of this campaign and to know that Ricoh is working to help groundbreaking dementia research.”
Ian Wilson, Chief Executive of Alzheimer’s Research UK, adds: “We are delighted to be working with Ricoh on this important campaign once again. We’re incredibly grateful to the people who shared their experiences to help create such powerful films, which show that dementia is about much more than memory loss. This latest chapter of Dementia Uncovered also underscores the commitment and dedication of the researchers whose work is so crucial. Dementia research is making progress and with support from the public and companies like Ricoh, we can make breakthroughs possible.”
To explore the campaign films, visit alzres.uk/DementiaUncovered.