In May, I shared with you the amazing results from the launch of the AIM Power of Ten Challenge. Now, four months later I'm excited to announce our members have done it again. Since we first asked AIM members to multiply their impact by recruiting at least 10 friends or colleagues to join, we have grown membership 161 percent.
During this same time, we have also seen Congress continue to prioritize Alzheimer's research funding with the House and Senate appropriation committees both approving historic funding increases. Our advocates are working tirelessly to ensure our policymakers continue to support not just these research efforts, but also critical care and support legislation.
But more work remains. We need your friends and colleagues to join this fight as members of AIM. We asked several of the most successful AIM Power of Ten Challenge participants to share how they rose to the challenge.
Dani Jachino, Chicago, IL, 57 Referrals
I started by sending a few emails explaining AIM and that I had committed to recruit 10 friends to join. One person immediately joined and thanked me for telling her about AIM - that was it! Seeing what worked for her, I decided to focus my message, explaining the history of AIM's success and that there was no time commitment to join. I remained persistent. I sent messages to several friends asking them to honor my birthday in February. I even stepped away from the computer and sent letters to a few people and asked others face-to-face. Proposed budget cuts to NIH provided another opportunity to send a message saying we needed support for AIM to help secure a $414 million increase in federal research funding for Alzheimer's. Through these varying approaches, I was able to recruit more than 50 new members.
Angelika Pittet, Riverside, CA, 15 Referrals
For the Power of Ten Challenge, I simply reached out to my co-workers by email and made the letter more personal, talking about my own mother and my work. I am a director of an adult day program for people who live with Alzheimer's or other dementia. I also printed out that letter to hand to my participating families and asked them to visit my link. That basically was it. I will be starting a second campaign soon and hope to at least double my numbers.
Julie Jensen Ramsay, Lisle, IL, 22 Referrals
When I first heard about the Power of Ten Challenge, I thought that it wasn't for me. I don't like to ask people for money and I didn't want to cut into my Walk to End Alzheimer's donations. But I saw other people on Facebook taking the challenge and my competitive nature kicked in. I started with a heartfelt Facebook post since it was just over a year since my mom passed from Alzheimer's. The post quickly received 28 likes, but no new members. I was about to give up but then a call with fellow advocates persuaded me to try a few more tactics. I handpicked Facebook friends who were Walk donors or had a personal connection to the disease. To each of these friends, I sent a Facebook message with a personal ask to join AIM. Then, as friends signed up, I thanked them in a tagged post. What happened next really surprised me - I started getting sign-ups from people who hadn't even received my personalized message. Simply, seeing the exchanges I was having with friends inspired tons more people to sign up, even my sorority sisters from years ago. It really reminded me that Alzheimer's affects all of us and we're all working together to end Alzheimer's.
Have you taken the challenge yet? We hope you'll follow in the footsteps of these advocates and the others whose stories we shared in May. Get started by downloading the AIM Power of Ten Challenge Kit.