Raising Epilepsy Awareness in Asian American Communities

Epilepsy News From: Sunday, May 15, 2016

In honor of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, we are spotlighting some of our local Epilepsy Foundations and their volunteers and activities to raise awareness about epilepsy and seizures in Asian American Communities.

Epilepsy Foundation Greater Cincinnati and Columbus

Franklin Park in Columbus, Ohio, is host to the annual Asian Festival over Memorial Day Weekend, May 28-29. It is a fun and educational event the whole family can attend. The Asian Festival is expected to host more than 100,000 visitors, an amazing growth from its beginnings in 1995 when it drew 12,000 visitors.

During the two-day festival, visitors will be able to join in many activities. There is Asian food, a career fair, a children’s area, cultural exhibits, Dragon Boat Races, a Market place, and Martial Arts and other cultural performances.

Another large part of the festival is the Health Pavilion. Encompassing an entire building, the Health Pavilion includes health promotions, nutrition education, demonstrations, and health screenings. Health information is available in many Asian languages, and interpreters are on hand to help people find the information they need.

The Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Cincinnati and Columbus is privileged to once again have a booth in the Health Pavilion where we will provide information on seizures and epilepsy in both English and Chinese. One of the largest Asian Festivals in the country, this event presents a unique opportunity to continue to educate and disseminate much needed information to the Asian American and broader community. Our goal is to help decrease the fear and misunderstandings surrounding epilepsy and ensure that those living with epilepsy are able to live life to the fullest and in a safe and healthy manner.

If you are near Columbus over Memorial Day weekend, we hope to see you all at the festival. It is an amazing experience not to be missed!

Epilepsy Foundation Hawaii

Epilepsy Foundation Hawaii

Staff from the Epilepsy Foundation Hawaii and students from Hawaii Pacific University attended a Public Health Fair on campus on April 4, 2016. Visitors at the fair were given information about epilepsy and encouraged to volunteer with the Foundation.

"I was first introduced to epilepsy through one of my loved ones as my boyfriend was diagnosed with the condition since he was 12 years old. What amazes me is that he is a talented student athlete playing college soccer, and, although epilepsy has set him back in a few ways, he exemplifies persistent character and lives a normal life with an enthusiastic demeanor and a passionate zeal for life.

“He inspires me every day. I feel that in our community, many seem to think that individuals with this condition are not able to live a happy and normal life. It would be ideal to educate these people with the notion that epilepsy does not restrict someone from enjoying the life that they would like to live. Personal talks and discussions from individuals who have epilepsy would be ideal. This way, there would be more awareness and knowledge on a topic I feel not too many people know about." – Ka'imi

Are'a Ka'imi'ola Amaral is a junior studying public health at Hawaii Pacific University. She is also a volunteer with the Epilepsy Foundation Hawaii.

Epilepsy Foundation Northwest

The Epilepsy Foundation Northwest is excited to increase our outreach to Asian American Communities in Washington, Oregon, and Alaska. We are proud to have partnered with local higher education institutions to offer Epilepsy 101 trainings, as well as provide materials to raise awareness, dispel myths, and reduce misunderstanding.

Recent events include a training with the Pilipino Student Association at Portland State University, as well as a training with the Minority Association of Pre-Health Students at the University of Washington. A recent Epilepsy Awareness Day at Salem Community College in Salem, Oregon, was a great success, as well. We look forward to continuing this work and spreading awareness around the Northwest.

Tiffany, Northwest Run/Walk for Epilepsy

Review an article published last summer about one of our volunteers from South Korea and her family's experience with epilepsy./p>

"You are allowed to talk about it — Asian Americans and support systems for dealing with epilepsy," Greg Young, Northwest Asian Weekly, July 31, 2015


Authored by

Aldith V. Steer MPH

Reviewed Date

Sunday, May 15, 2016

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