(PRWEB) December 21, 2012
The Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Los Angeles will launch the first of its 2013 Epilepsy Community Forums for Families on Saturday, January 5th in conjunction with its annual Family Holiday Party at the Annenberg Community Beach House in Santa Monica, CA.
The Forums’ interactive sessions will provide opportunities for families affected by epilepsy to come together in groups -- Parents of children with epilepsy and Adults with epilepsy and their loved ones and friends -- to share ideas, engage their peers, and learn from experts. By networking with others they can become better advocates – for themselves or their loved ones -- in the arenas of education, healthcare and epilepsy specialty care.
Dr. Raman Sankar, MD, PhD, Professor of Neurology and Pediatrics and Chief of Pediatric Neurology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), will share advances in pediatric epilepsy treatment that may benefit families with children who are experiencing seizures.
Ann Kinkor, Advocacy Coordinator for the statewide advocacy coalition, Epilepsy California, will also speak at the January Forum. Ms. Kinkor will share strategies to advocate for your child in school and information on developments in healthcare to help guide your choices.
Jim Abrahams, the director of The Charlie Foundation to Help Cure Pediatric Epilepsy, will also be available to discuss the use of ketogenic dietary therapies in epilepsy.
In addition to promoting education and self-advocacy, the concurrent Family Holiday Party connects families and combats isolation by bringing people together for a day of laughter and fun, seasonal games and activities. The Art of Elysium will lead children and teens in creative, confidence-boosting arts and crafts.
“Getting together with other parents who are in the same boat means we can relax with people who ‘get’ us.,” said Diane Crea Hamilton, mother of seven-year-old Josie who has epilepsy. “We can share ideas, prop each other up and hopefully have a laugh. We can relate the joys and the challenges of our beautiful kids. Connecting to someone that understands you can help in ways one cannot even imagine.”
To attend the Family Holiday Party and Parents' Forum, please sign-up using the online registration page.
The Epilepsy Family Forum is made possible in part with funding from the Epilepsy Foundation and the Health Resources and Services Administration/Maternal and Child Health Bureau under award number U23MC19824. Other speakers and panelists are being confirmed for the Forum, and other Epilepsy Community Forums are being organized for other dates and locations in February and March. Please sign-up for our Enews at http://www.ENDEPILEPSY.org to get updates.
Without warning, seizures can happen to anyone at any age. When a person has two or more unprovoked seizures, they have epilepsy. Seizures do not all look the same and, according to the International League Against Epilepsy, there are currently more than 25 different recognized epilepsy syndromes affecting almost 3 million people in the U.S. and about 65 million people worldwide. Someone is diagnosed with epilepsy every four minutes and, this year alone, almost 200,000 people in our country will be diagnosed. To date, there are no known cures.
ABOUT THE EPILEPSY FOUNDATION OF GREATER LOS ANGELES
Established in 1957 as a 501(c)3 charitable organization, the Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Los Angeles is leading the fight to END EPILEPSY® and the burden of seizures. Our fundraising and community efforts support care, advocacy and education, today, while investing in research and hope for tomorrow. Visit us online at ENDEPILEPSY.org.