By Madison Fleck
For Ponoka News
At 22, Jayden Hagemann is an advocate for Alzheimer’s awareness. After being inspired by his grandmother’s diagnosis, Hagemann established “Sweaters to Remember,” a clothing company that donates 10 per cent of all proceeds to the Alzheimer’s Society of Canada (ASC).
Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia. It is a chronic and irreversible condition that causes the gradual deterioration of memory and other cognitive functions. The ASC states that over 500,000 Canadians are living with dementia.
Hagemann said that since his grandmother’s diagnosis, he began noticing just how prevalent dementia was in the community.
“I saw how many families were affected by dementia,” said Hagemann, “(and) I wanted to do something to raise awareness.”
Sweaters to Remember started in March 2020 with a few simple designs, and has since expanded to include hats and wind breakers. All printing is done through Ponoka local business, Wedins Team and Corporate.
“It has been amazing watching Jayden take this idea and grow with it to where it is today,” said Susan Bussiere on behalf of Wedins. “We love playing a small part in the process and feel honoured that (he) wanted to work with us.”
The main logo, designed by Edmonton tattoo artist InkbyShae, depicts the Alzheimer purple ribbon and elephant, the only animal that never forgets anything. Hagemann hopes to expand the company in the future, and sell his brand in stores.
Although Hagemann’s main focus is Alzheimer’s awareness, the company has also been used for alternative fundraising purposes. The limited-edition Sammy T-shirt, designed by Hagemann, Lewis McDowell and Jared Bussiere, honours the memory of Hagemann’s close friend, who passed earlier this year. All proceeds go towards KidSport, and so far, $450 has been donated.
Hagemann lost his grandmother in July 2020, but that has only strengthened his ambitions towards Alzheimer’s awareness.
“Seeing first-hand the impact Alzheimer’s has on a family is truly heartbreaking,” said Hagemann, “My grandma has always reminded me to see the light in things no matter how hard, (and) I hope we can continue to do our part and raise awareness for Alzheimer’s.”
Orders can be placed through Instagram (@sweaterstoremember), or visit the online website at www.jaydenhag.wixsite.com/mysite (site is for visual only, not for order).