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Parkinson’s Disease Awareness Month: Awareness needed now more than ever

American Parkinson Disease Association Virginia chapterApril is Parkinson’s Disease Awareness Month, and the American Parkinson Disease Association Virginia chapter is hard at work to raise awareness of Parkinson’s disease and to celebrate the unshakeable spirit of the PD community.

From the dedicated researchers who forge ahead with unshakeable determination to find better treatments and a cure; to the care partners who provide unshakeable support day after day; to the people diagnosed with PD who live their lives with unshakeable spirit, optimism, and hope, despite the daily challenges they face – the APDA Virginia Chapter will rally that energy and has a full roster of activities planned for the month (and beyond) and many ways for people to get involved. Look for messages of inspiration and information throughout April on all APDA social media channels using #UnshakeableSpirit.

In Virginia alone, more than 24,000 people over the age of 60 are diagnosed and living with PD. Now more than ever, it is critical to support, engage and inform the PD community and raise awareness about this disease, and Parkinson’s Disease Awareness Month is a great time to shine a spotlight on this issue.

The past two years have been a struggle for everyone, but even more so for those who were already facing the challenges of life with PD. To keep the PD community supported, connected, and safe, APDA created extensive virtual programming to make sure that people living with PD had what they needed throughout the pandemic – from online exercise programs to help keep people moving when they couldn’t get to their in-person fitness classes, to educational webinars where they could ask PD experts their questions right from their own living rooms.

APDA has been there for them every step of the way. Many of these virtual programs continue, with in-person events and activities resuming as well.

During the month of April and beyond, the APDA Virginia Chapter will continue the work started in 2021 when regional services were expanded to reach the Parkinson’s disease community around the Commonwealth. They are currently taking applications from around the state for its Financial Support Program to help individuals defray costs related to PD, they are connecting constituents with support groups for people with Parkinson’s and their caregivers, and much more. They are also planning the 2022 APDA Virginia Optimism Walk for June 25 in Virginia Beach to raise funds and awareness of PD, for which registration is currently open.

“Every nine minutes there is a new diagnosis of PD, which means that in April alone nearly 5,000 people in this country will learn they have PD,” states Kendra Lapointe, president of the APDA Virginia Chapter. “Here in Virginia, we are the boots on the ground – we are in the communities, providing the support, education, programs, and services people need to live their best lives. We are here for them, with our unshakeable support, every day.” Lapointe continues, “We’re thankful we’ve been able to maintain this critical support virtually during the pandemic, but we’re really looking forward to seeing our PD community in person once again.”

The support of the general public is crucial, and April is the perfect time to take action and help the more than one million people in the United States coping with this chronic neurological movement disorder. Whether you help by raising awareness of PD or by making a donation that enables APDA to continue their critical work and fund research that will lead us to better treatments and ultimately, a cure; every effort makes a difference. Visit www.apdaparkinson.org/va to learn more.

For more information about APDA programs, services, and support in Virginia, contact the APDA Virginia Chapter at 757-495-3062 or [email protected].


augusta free press
augusta free press
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