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MS Society of Canada’s Acts of Greatness Campaign Celebrates MS Awareness Month

  • National News Release

Powerful portrayal of life with MS brought to light in Toronto, Montreal, and Calgary


Toronto, ON – May 23, 2019
– When 5 metres feels like 500 metres. For someone living with multiple sclerosis (MS), every step is an act of greatness. From May 24 to 30, the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada shares this message to shed light on the unpredictable nature of the disease through its Acts of Greatness campaign. The week-long awareness campaign includes a five-metre-long decal placed in major cities across Canada, illustrating the challenges Canadians living with MS face daily. The activation will be live in the PATH at Royal Bank Plaza, Toronto; Place-des-Arts, Montreal; and CrossIron Mills, Calgary.

"For Canadians living with MS who face mobility issues or experience fatigue, just walking five metres can sometimes feel like so much more,” says Pamela Valentine, president and CEO, MS Society of Canada. “Through this demonstration, we hope to illustrate the reality of many individuals living with MS, and raise awareness about the acts of greatness, both big and small, that they perform every day.”

Classified as an autoimmune disease of the central nervous system, MS can cause symptoms such as fatigue, lack of coordination, weakness, impaired sensation, vision problems, cognitive impairment and mood changes. When someone is diagnosed with MS, their life can turn on a dime: one day their body behaves normally, and the next it can refuse to listen to them.

"An act of greatness for someone living with MS is being able to adapt to regular life with an unpredictable disease,” says Sari Friedman, diagnosed with MS in 2018. “This could mean something as simple as powering through the fatigue to tackle everyday tasks or something larger like taking part in physical activity but realizing the intensity has to change. Ultimately it’s about feeling okay with where you are and what you’re able to now do.”

Canada has one of the highest rates of MS in the world, with 11 Canadians diagnosed with MS every day. Given its high prevalence, the Acts of Greatness campaign aims to demystify the illness by shedding light on the countless, often silent acts that people living with MS, families, caregivers, researchers, and the MS community perform daily. The campaign has a bold vision to raise $75 million and mobilize a nation to accelerate the pace of MS breakthroughs and empower people affected by MS to live their best lives.

The campaign activation will draw to a timely close on May 30, World MS Day, capping off MS Awareness Month. As a day that brings together MS communities across the world, Canada will join in global solidarity to raise awareness about MS and support the millions of individuals affected by the disease.

Onsite ambassadors will bring awareness to the public of the effects that MS can have on a person’s quality of life and encourage people to participate in a text-to-donate campaign. Canadians can support the campaign by texting ‘MS’ to 80100 to donate $10.

Support the Acts of Greatness campaign by visiting www.actsofgreatness.ca, or by sharing your own acts of greatness on your social media channels using #ActsofGreatness.

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About multiple sclerosis and the MS Society of Canada


Canada has one of the highest rates of multiple sclerosis in the world with 11 Canadians diagnosed with MS every day. MS is a chronic, often disabling disease of the central nervous system comprising the brain, spinal cord and optic nerve. Most people with MS are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 49 and the unpredictable effects of the disease last for the rest of their lives. The MS Society provides programs and services for people with MS and their families, advocates for those living with MS, and funds research to help improve the quality of life for people living with MS and to ultimately find a cure for this disease. Please visit mssociety.ca or call 1-800-268-7582 to make a donation or for more information.

Join the conversation and connect with the MS community online. Find the MS Society on Twitter, Instagram or like our page on Facebook.

CONTACTS:

Jennifer Asselin
MS Society of Canada
1-800-268-7582 ext. 3144
jennifer.asselin@mssociety.ca

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