Nancy Redkey (far right) with walkers and PDF staff.
Last Sunday, the Parkinson’s Disease Support Group of the Mid-Hudson Valley, Inc., hosted their fifth annual Walk Over Water in Poughkeepsie, NY, to benefit the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation.
More than 100 people attended, bringing the walk’s five-year fundraising total to $80,000. Not only that, the event continues to garner greater support from the community, including businesses and government. This year, NY State Senator Sue Serino joined to declare April as Parkinson’s Awareness Month, along with County Executive Marc Molinaro.
How do they do it? Read our interview with group leader Nancy Redkey, as she reflects on the annual walk, what inspires her to make a difference and tip on how to start your own walk.
Which part of living with Parkinson’s disease should be the priority for scientists to study? For Diane Cook the answer is: cognitive issues.
She submitted her answer through the Second Annual PDF Community Choice Research Awards survey. Now she is urging you to share yours by Thursday, April 30. Diane worked closely with PDF to develop the first Community Choice Research Awards survey last year, which are a “people’s choice” for PD research grants. The ProjectSpark Foundation run by Diane’s children donated funds for the awards.
Hear from Diane about why the “people’s choice” awards are critical for PD research, why she answered cognitive issues on her survey and why she urges you to take the survey too — today.
A picture is worth a thousand words — that’s how the old saying goes. And this has certainly been the case for Wendell Lowe’s photograph, “Day by Day.”
His image, which appears in the month of April in PDF’s 2015 Creativity and Parkinson’s Calendar, speaks volumes through an artistic depiction of a simple everyday item — the pillbox.
What does the pillbox image mean to you? For many people — not only those affected by Parkinson’s, but also for anyone who has experienced a serious illness or cared for aging parents, it so quickly speaks volumes.
Without any words, we see, hear and remember everything the pillbox means — the nagging symptoms, the complicated medication schedules PD requires, the times we set reminders, the times we forget a dose … the daily effort it takes to fight a chronic disease. Find out the story behind the image and Wendell’s participation in PDF’s Creativity and Parkinson’s Project, and what it means for him to share his work with the PD community.
April is Parkinson’s Awareness Month, and at PDF, we thought this would be a great time to catch up with Kristin Ford, a former PDF-funded Summer Fellow, to see how PDF funding helped to jumpstart her career in Parkinson’s research and care. You may remember that last month we caught up with another fellow, Will Johnson, who was also supported through PDF’s Summer Student Fellowship Program, which funds undergraduates and medical students to spend their summers working on PD-related research projects with mentors in the field. Typically, fellowships are offered for 10 weeks with an award of $4,000.
Kristin spent her Fellowship completing the project, “A Novel Evaluation of Daytime Vigilance in Individuals with Parkinson’s Disease Using a Virtual Reality Street-Crossing Task,” while an undergraduate at University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) in the summer of 2013. Kristin is now training to become a physical therapist, and plans to work with people with Parkinson’s disease. We sat down with her to hear about her experiences during her Fellowship.
Which aspect about living with Parkinson’s is your priority for researchers to study? For PDF Research Advocate A.C. Woolnough, the answer is: apathy. Apathy, which is a lack of interest or enthusiasm, is a common complaint among people with Parkinson’s and loved ones but has not received much research attention.
A.C. shared apathy as his priority by taking PDF’s six-question survey as part of the Second Annual Community Choice Research Awards. Below, we interviewed him to find out why he thinks researchers should spend more time studying apathy.
There’s still time for you too to submit. PDF is accepting survey submissions until Thursday, April 30. Later this year, we will choose two community-suggested priorities and fund scientists with $15,000 grants to study them.
“My collections are inspired by beauty and science, neuroscience to be exact,” says Emily Alice Ball.
A jewelry designer from the UK, Emily Alice’s collections are uniquely named and categorized … according to science. For instance, there’s the oxytocin and the serotonin collection, and then there’s adrenalin. And most importantly during April … there’s dopamine. Dopamine is the neurotransmitter in the brain that helps with movement and coordination. It is also the one that is lost in Parkinson’s disease.
Three years ago, Emily Alice, whose friend and customer lives with Parkinson’s disease, came to PDF with a creative idea for Parkinson’s Awareness Month. During the month of April, she would donate a portion of proceeds from the dopamine jewelry collection to PDF.