World MS Day had the theme of ‘connections’ this year and we focussed on ways our community has been staying connected. We also celebrated Volunteers’ Week and shared stories about how our volunteers have helped people to stay connected with their community. And for Carers Week, we focussed on this year’s theme of 'Making Caring Visible and Valued'.
To celebrate these important awareness dates, we shared lots of content across our channels to raise awareness of MS.
Our World MS Day activity, 30 May
To mark World MS Day, we shared some blogs from our community:
“Although this is a further erosion of my freedom of movement, the fact is I still have that option, even if it is reduced. That is what I shall be celebrating on World MS Day.” Martin.
Martin Baum has lived with MS for almost 40 years and shared a blog on coping in his day-to-day life.
Read Martin’s blog post here.
Our Ambassador Trishna Bharadia shared a blog on how she would be celebrating World MS Day. Hear from Trishna here.
Trishna was also involved in Tune in to MS, a virtual concert with performances and messages from some of the stars of the MS community, including the Global MS Choir! You can watch the video of the event by clicking this link.
How we marked Volunteers’ Week, 1-7 June
We sent an email to all of you, our wonderful volunteers, from Nick Moberly and Nick Winser to say a personal thank you to each and every one of you for your passion and commitment. Across Volunteers’ Week, we shared blogs every day from our community on their experiences of volunteers helping them or being a volunteer themselves. Read the blogs below:
“I wanted to create more cultural diversity and to highlight the many issues faced by someone of colour with multiple sclerosis.” Roxanne.
Read more of our community's blogs:
- Emily Revess - What it's like being a young trustee
- Kirsty Bennett - No toilet panic! Kirsty on volunteering from home
- Sue - A phone call can make a big difference to how someone feels
- Tony and Jag - Local groups team up to reach more people
- Louise is a volunteer on the Pontio project in Wales
And our ambassadors shared video messages on their social media account to thank our volunteer community.
- Janis Winehouse expressed her thanks in a video
- Trishna Bharadia shared a heartfelt message
- Stephanie Millward shows her gratitude in this video
Year-round recognition for our volunteers
Volunteers’ Week is always a great occasion to highlight the commitment and dedication of MS Society volunteers. But we love to recognise the outstanding contribution volunteers make all year round.
If you know of a volunteer who has gone above and beyond, please consider nominating them for a Shining Star award.
We’re reviewing our current Volunteer Reward and Recognition offer, so we can make it more fun, accessible and appealing. If you’d like to be involved in helping us improve it, please contact [email protected].
How we celebrated Carers Week, 7-13 June
And the national celebrations didn’t stop there. This year, the theme for Carers Week was 'Make Caring Visible and Valued' and focussed on not only recognising carers, but also valuing them for the vital contribution they make every day.
We shared a video from Keith, a carer, talking about his experience of caring for his wife who lives with MS. You can watch the video on our website here.
Campaigning for carers
We’ve called for UK governments to increase Carer’s Allowance, and raised it in questions to ministers and parliamentarians. Last May, we also joined with more than 100 other charities and unions to write to MPs, urging action to reduce the financial pressures unpaid carers face.
During Carers Week we also shared lots of resources on our website to help provide information to carers:
- When someone close to you has MS (Q&A and information)
- Supporting someone with MS (booklet)
- A guide for young carers (booklet)
- Advanced MS - a carer's handbook
- Carers checklist
Thanks to all of you who joined in, shared your stories and shared our social media content. With your help, we’ve been able to raise awareness about both MS and our volunteering programme.