Wednesday, May 28th is World MS Day. All over the world, people will organise events, wear orange, volunteer, work and/or attend conferences to raise awareness about an illness that so far, still cannot be cured.
While 2014 is the ‘European Year of the Brain,’ this year’s World MS Day theme is ‘Access.’ Whether this means access to information, medication, support, buildings, rights or services, somewhere near you people with MS, their families and MS societies will step forward and express their need for more awareness, understanding and hope that one day, MS will be eradicated for good.
Until then MS societies, in many cases, will continue to be the first point of contact after a possible diagnosis or for continued support. To ease physical, mental and emotional symptoms, local MS societies work hard to cater for people with MS, their families and their carers.
According to the MSIF’s Atlas of MS 2013, “MS is found in found in every country in the world where epidemiological data exists. It affects an estimated 2.3 million people worldwide, although it is likely that many hundreds of thousands more remain undiagnosed.”
With that staggering global estimation in mind, I want to send MS Ireland a very big ‘thank you for everything!’ They have been extremely busy with organising and attending conferences as well as other events to raise awareness about MS, and they deserve more than just mere plaudits. I simply cannot write enough adjectives and nouns to describe MS Ireland’s enthusiasm, strength, support, friendship and love for what they do.
With that in mind, I want to mention some of the volunteering and advocating they will do on World MS Day on Wednesday.
In Dublin, the society will be walking up and down Grafton Street selling pins, shaking buckets and sharing information. If you happen to be in Cork, you could also attend the Living with MS One Day Conference.
Other events across the country:
ψ Bagpack in Kilkenny
ψ Collection in the Pavilions Centre, Swords
ψ Coffee, home baked goodies & music in the MS Care Centre
ψ Coffee morning in Leixlip, Kildare
ψ Collection in Dundrum Town Centre
ψ Coffee morning in Letterkenny, Donegal
ψ Open Day in Ballykeefe, Limerick
ψ Information Evening in Galway
If you cannot attend at all, why not lobby your local TD here, asking him/her to stand up for people with MS and for the daily issues they face. There are currently approximately 8000 people with MS in Ireland who need improved access to treatment, services, benefits and entitlements.
Budget cuts have severely affected the lives of people with MS and their carers the last few years, and people cannot give anymore. We need to ask our decision-makers in government to stand up against current health policies in Ireland, which see the deteriorating state of neurology.
If you want to add your own One Day Wish on the MS Ireland website, you can do so here.
To find your nearest MS Society for news about World MS Day, please click here.
©Willeke Van Eeckhoutte and Ireland, Multiple Sclerosis & Me, 2011-2014. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner are strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Willeke Van Eeckhoutte and Ireland, Multiple Sclerosis & Me with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.