Eagle Scout project benefits seniors with Alzheimer's disease

Matthew Gantzer with the Alzheimer's Resource and Activity Center he built for his Eagle Scout Project. Photo by Leslie Selig

Matthew Gantzer lost his grandfather two years ago after a 15-year battle with Alzheimer’s disease. In honor of his grandfather, and as a way to help other families dealing with Alzheimer’s, Matthew decided to focus his Eagle Scout project on providing resources to these families and their caregivers. The result is an Alzheimer’s Resource and Activity Center that now resides at the Dwyer Memorial Senior Center.

Matthew proposed this project to Leslie Selig, director of community services for Bay Village, in 2016. He then found a piece of furniture he could re-purpose to fit his needs, and worked with the Bay Village Woodshop to complete the refinishing. He set up an Amazon Wish List so that members of the community could support the project by donating books, puzzles and other activities appropriate for those with Alzheimer’s disease. He also collected literature from several assisted-living facilities in the area who have special residences for people with dementia.

Matthew installed the completed activity center on June 30, with help from a few of his fellow scouts. “This center is a really wonderful resource for residents of Bay Village,” said Selig. “So often families don’t know how to keep their loved ones suffering from dementia engaged, and now we have several options to offer. That this came from someone so young makes it particularly special.”

Matthew, age 16, is a member of Troop 41 in Bay Village, and will be a senior at Bay High School.

Leslie Selig

Leslie Selig, Director of Community Services for Bay Village

Read More on Community Service
Volume 9, Issue 13, Posted 9:26 AM, 07.05.2017