Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Awareness Week 2020 runs from 14th – 20th September. This is an annual event held by MS societies throughout New Zealand including Multiple Sclerosis Wanganui.
MS is a disease of the central nervous system the cause of which is unknown. The course of MS is unpredictable and variable and it affects more women than men. Although there is no cure there are treatments which can modify the disease course and there are symptomatic treatments.
It is estimated there are 2.5 million people worldwide and around 4,000 people in New Zealand with MS. In the Wanganui region we assist 50 persons who are affected some of whom have young families and are still working. Symptoms of this disease vary widely from day to day and from person to person and can include extreme fatigue, loss/changes in sensation, problems with balance and walking, loss/changes in vision and many more.
The regional MS Societies offer support and advocacy for people with MS and their family/whanau and awareness and education for the public, residential care facilities and any other interested parties. The national office was formed for and continue to advocate for systemic change so people with MS in NZ have access to first world treatment, resources and services to improve their well-being and quality of life.
We need to raise around $6,000 per year to keep the local society running so we hope for about $2,000.00 in our annual collection – anything over that is great.
This year’s theme is the ‘Face of MS’. The campaign provides an opportunity for each Region to promote what they do in their region. Working with one of our chosen members, the campaign will tell the public about that persons MS story and how the Region supports them. Our local ‘Face of MS’ is Sue Gaylard who has had MS for thirty years. You can find this wonderful lady’s story at https://fundraise.msnz.org.nz/faceofms/MS-wanganui
Because of Covid 19 and the changes it has wrought the street appeal is on hold for this year . But the national office has assisted the regional societies to set up a virtual giving platform for donations. This will allow for donation options which will come directly to the regional society of your choice. Please give generously to the above site so we can continue to support PwMS.