Living with Multiple Sclerosis involves all kinds of challenges, and that's why the World Day of MS celebrates, on May 27, 2015, the ways in which people around the world break down barriers in living with the disease.
World MS Day (World MS Day) is an annual movement to raise awareness about MS, bringing together the global community to share stories, to campaign with and for people affected by MS, support and connect the 2.3 million people who are living with the disease worldwide.
The World MS Day movement, led by the MS International Federation (International Federation of MS) is the only global awareness promotion campaign on Multiple Sclerosis, which brings together all the world's EM organizations to provide information about the disease to the public, promoting awareness of how MS affects the lives of people living with the disease.
It was launched in 2009 with over 200 events in 67 countries, and has grown every year!
The theme of WorldMSDay 2015 is ACCESS: access to diagnosis, treatment and support; access to buildings, travel and leisure services; and access to education, training and employment.
When it comes to equal access for people with Multiple Sclerosis, which really means is access to social, political and economic life. Equal access does not only mean physical access to facilities but also access to tools, services and resources than people without MS enjoy.
Barriers to access faced by people with Multiple Sclerosis Multiple vary, depending on where they live and what symptoms they have. So the World Day of MS would like to reflect this diversity by sharing experiences obstacles to access different people around the world in order that this initiative will help people understand the complex nature of multiple sclerosis and join the movement global Multiple Sclerosis.
Below are some situations of access to social, political and economic life that patients of Multiple Sclerosis seek:
Features: There is only one MRI system in your country, but far away, about 10 hours by car;
Treatment: There is a treatment available for your problem, but it is not provided by the state and is too expensive;
Medicines: The medicines you need are not available in your country, but are available elsewhere;
Social life: When you meet new people, it is difficult to decide how to tell them you have Multiple Sclerosis;
Family Life: Do you worry that / to his / her partner / to end the relationship when your symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis become less controllable;
Jobs: You want to work, but your boss does not understand multiple sclerosis, or know how to help you;
Relationships: Due to Multiple Sclerosis, you worry if you will find a partner who understands you;
Public transportation: Buses in your area does not have ramps or spaces for wheelchairs;
Children: Do you worry whether your children will lose opportunities because they are taking care of you;
Work: Laws concerning people with disabilities in your country does not include multiple sclerosis;
Understanding: Your children do not understand why, in a few days, you won't be able to run with them in the park;
Facilities: You need to climb a flight of stairs to get to the consultation of your local doctor and the building has no elevator;
Information: Have you been diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, but has no information on treatment or support in your language;
Medical specialists: In your area there is a shortage of neurologists, and you need to wait long to get an appointment;
Comings and goings: There are days when you can not walk unaided, but your government does not offer equipment to help walk, and you have no way to buy one;
Education: You want to go to college, but think you can not work and study at the same time to mantain yourself.
As mentioned, barriers to access, faced by people with Multiple Sclerosis, vary, depending on where they live and what symptoms they have. Therefore, the World MS Day 2015 will share stories about different forms of partnership adopted by people and organizations around the world to improve access and break down barriers in living with Multiple Sclerosis.
That's why this campaign uses the hashtag #strongerthanMS because we are TOGETHER strong for Multiple Sclerosis!!!
Aren't we stronger together?
Who helps you to be stronger than MS?
To celebrate the fact that people and organizations around the world are helping to make life easier for people with Multiple Sclerosis, the International Federation of MS released BEAUTIFUL electronic cards to be sent to people who have helped you to break down barriers to access. These people can be caregivers, friends, family members, health professionals, politicians, schools or support groups ... anyways, anyone who has made a difference in your life as multiple sclerosis patient.
Would you like to understand the meaning of each animal?
The animals of the campaign represent the different forms of aid that humans have found to care for each other and show that we can achieve more when we work in partnership, which means, TOGETHER WE ARE STRONGER THAN MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS - #strongerthanMS.
To decide which animals to use was a difficult task for the organizers of the campaign. But they all have a special meaning. Read below and choose the one that best represents the person you are sending the message to:
Lionesses work together to hunt and provide food for their families. They represent partnership, physical strength and ferocity.
The ducks are programmed with their migratory route and travel thousands of miles together.
They represent inner strength and the trajectory of people affected by MS.
Penguins gather to warm up and move so that each bird has its turn in the center and on the banks.
They represent teamwork, survival and altruism.
Bees gather in large numbers to create something great. They represent the strength of the assembly and the hard work.
The mother bear is a symbol of strength, while the creation shows a more vulnerable side. The mother protects the offspring against the world. They represent the strength of bonding and physical strength.
I take this opportunity to say THANK YOU to everyone that have been helping me to break the barriers of access through the Blog MSforDummies, showing me that TOGETHER WE ARE STRONGER THAN MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS. Each comment, e-mail, message, shows me that I'm not alone. #strongerthanMS