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Lagan Valley Island lights up for Huntington’s Disease Awareness

Lagan Valley Island lights up for Huntington’s Disease Awareness

May 7, 2019

May is Huntington’s Disease (HD) awareness month. In honour, we lit up Lagan Valley Island lit up tonight (Tuesday 7 May) to support Huntington’s Disease Association Northern Ireland’s (HDANI) ‘LightItUp4HD’ campaign.

The campaign aims to increase awareness of HD in Northern Ireland. The idea behind it is that the more people who understand the disease, the more help and support can be extended to those who are impacted by it.

HD is a neuro-degenerative disorder, meaning that it damages the neurons in the brain. The disease affects males and females equally, usually between the ages of 30 and 50. HD causes a person’s body to progressively deteriorate – physically, cognitively and emotionally until the individual becomes dependent on the help of others. The typical life expectancy from onset is around 15 to 20 years. Sadly, some children may develop HD earlier in life, which may result in their illness progressing faster.

HD patients often feel isolated and afraid to admit that they have the disease to their friends and family. So encouraging more people to talk about HD and giving people an understanding of what the disease is will help reduce the stigma around it.

This campaign is a wonderful opportunity for those with HD to raise awareness, make connections, get support from their communities and move forward with pride and dignity.

Mayor of Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council, Councillor Uel Mackin, said: “On behalf of the council, I’m pleased to be supporting HDANI’s campaign during Huntington’s Disease Awareness Month.

“The ‘LightItUp4HD’ campaign has grown into a global recognition of the disease, and we’re delighted to be joining the many organisations involved in raising awareness around the world.

“Now is the perfect time to learn about Huntington’s disease and HDANI provides support, information, advice and social connections to those living with the impact of the disease. Go to their website www.hdani.org.uk  and talk to your friends and neighbours about it so that, together, we can help educate others across Northern Ireland.”