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Comedian Seth Rogen promotes Alzheimer's awareness

March 4, 2014

Instead of addressing the 20-something crowd to which he is accustomed, comedic actor Seth Rogen recently spoke to a much older, more influential group of individuals: Congress.

Rogen, known for his work in films such as "Knocked Up" and "This is the End," gave a heartfelt speech about Alzheimer's and how the disease had personally affected his life. He told present senators that his wife's mother was diagnosed when she was in her 50s, but Rogen and his wife realized that they - much like the majority of the younger population - did not realize how greatly the disease would impact their lives.  

Rogen addresses Congress about the impact of the disease
In an attempt to inspire change within the government, Rogen spoke to Congress Feb. 26 and urged them to reassess how much money the agency funnels into treatment and research for finding a cure, according to CBS News. In his address, Rogen explained how watching his mother-in-law quickly progress through the disease inspired both him and his wife to start a nonprofit to educate younger individuals who are not well informed about Alzheimer's. The nonprofit, Hilarity for Charity, was Rogen's way of ensuring that more people were knowledgeable about the illness.

"It was through this we felt we weren't just complaining there was nothing to be done, but actively taking steps to do something," Rogen said in the address. "Instead of being disappointed that young people were so misinformed about the reality of the disease, we started to educate them."

Although Rogen was granted time in front of the senators, he expressed his disappointment at the lack of attendance. According to Rogen's Twitter account, only two senators were present to hear him finish his speech. On his profile page, he posted a picture of the vacant chairs with the accompanying caption: "All those empty seats are senators who are not prioritizing Alzheimer's. Unless more noise is made, it won't change."

Hilarity for Charity educates children about Alzheimer's
Founded in January 2012, Hilarity for Charity aims to promote Alzheimer's awareness among the younger generation, according to its website. As part of its cause, the organization holds yearly events featuring some of the world's biggest stars - including Bruno Mars, Patton Oswalt and Aziz Ansari - to promote further education and donation collection. Headlining artists perform comedy routines, musical acts and speeches about the disease. Funds collected by the event are donated to the National Alzheimer's Association, which is one of the company's largest sponsors.