When Candy Porter describes living with dementia, she exudes confidence, positivity and gratitude for the life that she has lived – and all that’s left ahead. Candy was a daily runner for 40 years with excellent health when she fell ill in 2018 with a sudden infection that caused inflammation in her brain that led to dementia. The diagnosis came with fear of the unknown.
“I was shocked because I’ve never had to deal with anything limiting,” says Candy, a retired social worker. “It was very scary, but I’m starting to get used to it being a part of my life.”
Candy is among people affected by dementia who are being honoured at the IG Wealth Management Walk for Alzheimer’s this May. This event is the largest fundraiser for the Alzheimer Society of B.C. and, this year, participants are encouraged to join the Walk on Sunday, May 29 to celebrate and remember the people in their lives who have been affected by dementia.
For Candy, accepting dementia as a part of her life means making time to attend The Society’s programs and services, and maintaining a full and connected social life. Candy continues to volunteer in the community as a support group facilitator for men committed to non-violence, runs daily, and hosts family dinners with her three children, five grandchildren, extended family and close friends. As someone who has dedicated her life to helping others, the transition also means opening herself up to accepting help from the strong network she has built over the years.
“She was the best friend anyone could have for 20 years,” says Brenda, her friend and care partner. “I owe her 20 more years, then we’ll reevaluate.”
The pair attend the Alzheimer Society of B.C.’s Minds in Motion® online social and fitness program together, and recently signed up to take watercolour classes, something Candy was inspired to do after learning about other women in the early stages of dementia who began exploring new artistic outlets after initially feeling frustrated with changes in their cognitive abilities.
Funds raised for the IG Wealth Management Walk for Alzheimer’s help British Columbians at any stage in the dementia journey by supporting the Alzheimer Society of B.C.’s programs and services. On Sunday, May 29, 2022, participants will be walking in communities around B.C., including in Victoria and Nanaimo. To learn more, register for an event near you or make a donation, visit walkforalzheimers.ca.
If you are affected by dementia, the Alzheimer Society of B.C. can help. Call the First Link® Dementia Helpline at