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Orange County will use $900K federal grant for dementia awareness programs

Posted November 18, 2015

Orange County officials announced Wednesday that they will use a $900,000 federal grant to support people with dementia and those who care for them.
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— Orange County officials announced Wednesday that they will use a $900,000 federal grant to support people with dementia and those who care for them.

Linnea Smith, the wife of the late University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill basketball coach Dean Smith, was in attendance for the launch of the Dementia-Friendly Business Campaign.

The work will start with 10 local businesses that have pledged to enhance support for people with dementia and their caregivers. The businesses will host training for employees who interact with customers regularly.

Smith said programs like this are crucial to help fight the effects of dementia.

"The devastating disability, the lack of awareness and the need for more research certainly tends to overshadow the need for support for families."

Dean Smith, who led the Tar Heels to two national titles, set the record for career victories and launched the careers of countless players and coaches, died Feb. 7 after a long battle with dementia. He was 83.

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