The Healthcare Foundation of Delaware County has given a $5,000 grant to the Alzheimer's Association of Delaware County to help continue and expand Early Stage programming for those with Alzheimer's and their support group.

The Healthcare Foundation of Delaware County has given a $5,000 grant to the Alzheimer's Association of Delaware County to help continue and expand Early Stage programming for those with Alzheimer's and their support group.

Early Stage refers to those diagnosed with Alzheimer's or related disorders who are in the beginning stages of the disease, regardless of age. Programs are designed to be stimulating and purposeful; those participating in the program attend Day Out Club, a social engagement program that brings people together to exercise their brains and bodies and participate in community service projects.

Art therapy is part of the program, as is Monthly Early Stage Support Group and Reflections, a seven-week series that is part education and part support group. These groups will continue thanks to the grant.

The other four nonprofit organization receiving grants are as follows:

* The Delaware County Chapter of the American Red Cross: $5,000 to support recruitment and leadership in county schools to increase blood collections.

* Delaware Speech and Hearing, $5,000 for the expansion of audiology and hearing aid services, including a clinical audiometer to meet the needs for greater accessibility to services.

* Equi-Valent Riding Center, $2,500 for horse therapy and therapeutic riding. Through the assisted therapy programs, horses are used to teach six-week social skills classes.

* People In Need: $5,000 for a medical assistance program that provides financial help to Delaware County residents to purchase certain prescription glasses, medical supplies and the rent or purchase of medical appliances.

* Safe Harbor Support Services, $1,100 for diabetic education classes in cooperation with the Ohio State University Extension and the Delaware General Health District. A basic nutrition course at Columbus State Community College will support a wellness coordinator to provide the program on site and continue training after the diabetic education classes are complete.