MS Awareness Week March 2 – 8, 2015

Southfield, MI — This year, the National Multiple Sclerosis Society’s annual awareness campaign kicks off March 2–8 and will provide opportunities for people across the country to unite, raise awareness, and find new ways to help people with MS live their best lives. MS Awareness Week is a special week to recognize progress made and to inspire others to join the Society’s vision of a world free of MS.

Multiple sclerosis, an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system, interrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body. MS affects more than 2.3 million people and over 18,000 people in Michigan.

The Society mobilizes people and resources to drive research for a cure and to address the challenges of everyone affected by MS. Since its inception, the Society has invested $870 million in MS research and has recruited more than 800 new researchers to the field. Each year, through its comprehensive nationwide network of programs and services, the Society also helps more than one million people affected by MS connect to the people, information and resources needed to live their best lives.

“People impacted by MS are connecting across the nation starting this week to combine their efforts, knowledge and hope in order to move us closer to a world free of multiple sclerosis,” said Elana Sullivan, president of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Michigan Chapter.

Local Activities:

There are many activities planned by companies and individuals across Michigan to recognize MS Awareness Week, including:

Edible Arrangements® Metro Detroit Group, comprised of 19 local retail stores in southeast Michigan, will donate $5 from the purchase of each Orange Citrus Blossom™ arrangement sold during the month of March to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Visit their Facebook page for more info: www.facebook.com/EdibleArrangementsMetroDetroitGroup or order online at www.ediblearrangements.com.
National MS Society, Michigan Chapter staff and volunteers will visit the Michigan Capital to deliver information regarding MS to state legislators.
Members of the media and employees from numerous companies throughout Michigan will be showing support by wearing orange during the week.
A group of young men from the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity at Grand Valley State University are conducting a weeklong, outdoor 160-mile walk in order to raise awareness of the disease and to raise funding for the MS Society. Follow their journey at http://www.facebook.com/ATOWalksHard
Registration is open for Bike MS, MuckFest MS, and Walk MS fundraising events in Michigan. For more info and to sign up to participate or volunteer, visit http://www.nationalMSsociety.org/mig

Resources:

This MS Awareness Week and beyond, find the power of connection and visit www.MSconnection.org. Just some of the opportunities you will find are:

Share Why You Connect. Share your story and connect with others at www.MSconnection.org. You can learn more about MS, upload your own photo and connection to share with others, download tools to spread MS awareness, or register to participate in Walk MS or Bike MS or another event near you. Whether you volunteer, bike, walk, advocate, educate, or support–every connection you create moves us closer to a world free of MS and shows your commitment to the MS movement.

MS Connection. Join the Society’s online community for making meaningful connections–when, where and how you want. Visitors and members will learn about topics that are important to them, connect with others in the MS movement, find expert MS information and opinions at their fingertips, and join or start groups and discussions of their own. Visit www.MSconnection.org.

Other Opportunities to Connect. You can build connections, view and share images, videos, and stories about your connections on the Society’s Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/nationalMSsociety. You can also spread the word using the hash tag #MSconnection or visit the Society’s You Tube page at: https://www.youtube.com/user/NationalMSSociety

Live Webcast: Finding Answers for Progressive MS. On Wednesday, March 4, you can join a panel of experts for a live webcast on “Finding Answers for Progressive MS.” Topics will include updates on research, treatments, symptom management and rehabilitation. The webcast will culminate a research summit organized by the International Progressive MS Alliance, which has invited some 100 scientists from around the world to move forward a global initiative to end progressive MS. The Alliance is cumulatively investing nearly $30 million over the next six years, initiating last year 22 research projects across 9 countries with additional projects to be announced later in 2015. To register for the webcast visit: http://www.nationalmssociety.org/About-the-Society/News/Live-Webcast-Finding-Answers-for-Progressive-MS

Supporting this MS Awareness building effort is a year-round MS Awareness Public Service education campaign:

Public Awareness Campaign—A multi-channel Public Service Awareness Campaign: MS Kills Connection > < Connection Kills MS features real people living with the effects of MS. Included in the campaign are Meredith Vieira and Richard Cohen as well as Noah “40” Shebib, the charismatic music producer and song writer who is a major contributing force to the rapper Drake’s meteoric rise to fame. The unique and powerful campaign was developed pro-bono in partnership with the renowned advertising agency Wieden+Kennedy. It was shot by the award-winning portrait photographer Martin Schoeller. The Connections Public Service Announcements will be spotlighted on mega-electronic billboards in New York City’s Times Square that have been donated by Clear Channel and Times Square 2 for millions of people to see during the month of March.

Media support for building awareness and understanding about MS throughout the month of March is generating coverage by the Meredith Vieira Show, Working Mother magazine, Parents magazine, EveryDay Health, Healthline, Healthguru, and Lifescript among other platforms.

About Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis, an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system, interrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body. Symptoms range from numbness and tingling to blindness and paralysis. The progress, severity and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot yet be predicted, but advances in research and treatment are moving us closer to a world free of MS. Most people with MS are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50, with at least two to three times more women than men being diagnosed with the disease. MS affects more than 2.3 million worldwide.

About the National MS Society

The Society mobilizes people and resources to drive research for a cure and to address the challenges of everyone affected by MS. In 2014, the Society invested $50.2 million to advance more than 380 research projects around the world in order to stop MS in its tracks, restore what has been lost and end MS forever. Through its comprehensive nation-wide network of programs and services, it also helped more than one million people affected by MS connect to the people, information and resources needed to live their best lives.


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