AAQI: My Own Heartbreak to Hope

The Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI)  closes on December 31, 2013. Our volunteers have worked long and hard, but we have reached our goal and raised over $1,000,000 for Alzheimer's Disease research funding.

We started out with just our wonderful founder, Ami Simms and her vision of making a difference in the fight against Alzheimer's Disease. With an unimaginable amount of hard work, Ami formed an entire web of volunteers. She created a non-profit organization, a website, website developers and volunteers, a facebook account, an AAQI update blog, an advisory board for researching and delegating funding to research institutions and a handful of volunteers that grew into a virtual army.

A wonderful team that has worked endless to do what needed to be done to reach our goal...make a difference in the march against Alzheimer's Disease by raising money for research funding! And we have done this, and much, much more!

With her own love of quilting, and in honor of her own mother who suffered from Alzheimer's Disease, Ami created one of the most amazing grassroot organizations, ever! Our core group of volunteers grew, our core group of quilters grew, and best of all, the sheer number of quilters..well, we grew and grew and grew!

She/we raised awareness by making, donating, and selling small format art quilts. And best of all, we reached an amazing goal of having earned over ONE MILLION DOLLARS!

And what needed to be done, we raised awareness about Alzheimer's Disease, we secured additional funding for Alzheimer's Disease research, we delegated that funding to great research universities, and we have made some degree of progress in finding viable treatments on the way to a permanent cure for a disease that robs us not only of the use of our minds, but the use of our bodies.

Alzheimer's is a disease that destroys our loved one day by day by day over years, and often decades of care and increasing medical expense. A disease that literally exhausts those of us who care for our loved ones, either in their own homes, or in loving and responsible extended care homes.

None of it is easy, it is all so very challenging as it robs us, day by day, bit by bit, of our mothers, our fathers, our sisters, our brothers, our aunts and our uncles, our nieces, nephews, grandparents, co-workers, and friends.

Bit by bit they seem to disappear from the people we once knew them to be. But even more rapidly we disappear from, and to them.

Before the year ends, we still have quilts for sale. There are some yet to be purchased on all pages of the For Sale page at AAQI. And if you were one of our amazing quilters, be sure to check on your own quilts and see if any are still available for purchase. We need to MOVE these little darlings, and prices have been drastically reduced!

We have only a few short weeks left, and if you don't do it now..well, just like me, you might forget to do it!!!

And keep in mind that the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI) is more than happy to accept monetary donations!  

Buy quilts, donate money to this wonderful, charitable cause and keep up this good fight.

Buy a quilt and give it as gift  to someone you love, and/or in memory of someone you have lost. It's a win-win, no matter what!

Once, December 2013 is over, the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI) will just be a memory. 

But it's a good memory, a grand memory, even a memorable memory for our times. Never ever doubt that a small band of dedicated people can make a difference, because we have. We have literally changed our world, one little quilt at a time.

And speaking of win-win.........I am so incredibly, incredibly proud of my own AAQI Liberated Quilting Challenge group!!!!

We have made and donated somewhere around 450 quilts. And at our peak that was only about 30 quilters so it is amazing that we have done this well!!!  I am so incredibly proud of us, of you, and of all you have done.

Thank you, thank you, thank you! I love and thank all of you from the bottom of my heart!

And as for my own AAQI quilts? I have made and donated 75 small format art quilts and almost all of them have now sold. I was honored to have two of them (see above) be part of the 
Alzheimer's Illustrated: Heartbreak to Hope touring exhibit that traveled across the USA for the past 3 years.

Both of my quilts were placed in the final AAQI December Auction which ran from Dec. 1-10th. Our December Auction raised $2, 730.50 for AAQI and Alzheimer's research funding!!!!

All Quilts
On Sale
40%-60% Off

Your quilt purchases help us buy more science!
Priority: Alzheimer's Quilts make perfect gifts for the holidays. This is our last year of fundraising and we would like each and every quilt to find a home before December 30th. Please take a few moments and look at our selection of beautiful quilts. Hurry and make your selection today. Shop now!

The December 2013 Quilt Auction
Raised $2,730.50 For The AAQI!

Being a part of the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI) has meant the world to me. It reminded me that there wasn't anything I couldn't do, anything I didn't do, to be my very best self and trying my very, very hardest to do all that I could....for my mother, for my father, and for the other 13 relatives that all faced Alzheimer's or a related dementia by the end of their lives.

May all that we have done, make a difference in all of our lives, and in the lives of those that follow ours.

Michele Bilyeu blogs With Heart and Hands as she shares a quilting journey through her life in Salem, Oregon and Douglas, Alaska. Sharing thousands of links to Free Quilt and Quilt Block Patterns and encouraging others to join in the Liberated Quilting Challenge and make or donate small art quilts to the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI) Help us change the world, one little quilt at a time!