On Saturday, May 27, Project Sleep kicked off the Rising Voices of Narcolepsy training program with a public speaking workshop in Los Angeles, California. Rising Voices of Narcolepsy trains people with narcolepsy to spread awareness through speaking or writing. This serves the dual purpose of improving public understanding of this condition and empowering a new set of narcolepsy advocates to share their stories. The workshop’s participants came from across the country and around the world – visiting from Australia, New Jersey, Washington, Texas, and California.
“With only one-quarter of people living with narcolepsy having accurate diagnosis, raising awareness is so critical,” explains Julie Flygare, JD, president and founder of Project Sleep. “It is surreal to see this dream become a reality as a key step in opening people’s hearts and minds to narcolepsy.”
The May 27th workshop was the first of four Rising Voices of Narcolepsy training sessions taking place in the summer of 2017. The three remaining sessions will take place via an online platform created for the program. In total, over 40 people are enrolled to participate this year.
“Going into this, we knew we would hear compelling stories from participants,” describes the program’s co-developer Rebecca Fuoco, MPH. “But our first session really reinforced our approach of combining health communication best practices with first-hand storytelling to educate the public about misunderstood conditions.”
All spots for the 2017 Rising Voices of Narcolepsy program are full. To receive updates on future Rising Voices of Narcolepsy training opportunities, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would like to request a Rising Voices of Narcolepsy trainee to speak at your event or write for your publication, please fill out this form.
Photography by Matt Lau.