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Saturday, March 1, 2014

March Is National Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month

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March Is National Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month

Chicago, Ill., February 28, 2014 — More than 20,000 Illinoisans live with multiple sclerosis, an unpredictable, often disabling disease that interrupts the flow of information in the central nervous system, but the disease’s impact stretches much further, to family members, friends and loved ones.

Throughout March, which is MS Awareness Month, staff and volunteers at the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Greater Illinois Chapter, will be pounding the pavement to raise funds and promote MS research, advocacy, programs and services in its mission to create a world free of MS. Governor Pat Quinn has joined in the cause, officially proclaiming March as MS Awareness Month in Illinois, and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has done the same in the City of Chicago.

Activities taking place throughout the month promoting MS awareness include the following:

  • Paint the Town Orange – Chicago residents can expect to see the city in a whole new light as the skyline glows a little more orange than usual. Several buildings throughout the city, including Willis Tower, will light up their towers and place posters and messaging promoting MS research inside their buildings. In addition, Wrigley Field will highlight MS awareness on their famous marquis.

  • Dine to End MS – One Off Hospitality Group and Chili’s restaurants will be taking part in a unique restaurant program that raises MS awareness and funds through special promotions. All seven One Off restaurants will be participating, including Avec, Big Star, Blackbird, Publican, Publican Quality Meats, Violet Hour and Nico Osteria. In addition, Chili’s will donate 10 percent of purchases made using a special voucher that can be found on the Greater Illinois Chapter website at msIllinois.org.

  • “The MS Project” lottery ticket – The Illinois Lottery will launch its 2014 “MS Project” instant win scratch-off ticket on Tuesday, March 4. The $2 ticket, now in its seventh year, gives buyers a chance to win $20,000, with all net proceeds helping to fund MS research projects throughout Illinois. Tickets will be available at retailers statewide.

  • Blitz Days – Volunteers will be on the move during the first two weeks of March, distributing MS Awareness Month materials and orange Tootsie Pops at locations across downtown Chicago, including Union Station, Ogilvie Station and select “el” stations.

  • Text to Give – Any individual with an active cell phone who wants to make a difference to help end MS forever can participate in the Greater Illinois Chapter’s Text to Give campaign, with all proceeds going toward MS research. Donations of $10 can be made by texting “AWARE” to 20222 throughout the month.

Additional promotions and fun activities will take place on the Greater Illinois Chapter’s social media pages, www.facebook.com/MSGreaterIL and @MSgreaterIL on Twitter. If you are interested in volunteering with the Greater Illinois Chapter during MS Awareness Month, contact Jocelyn Cheng at 312.423.1139 or jocelyn.cheng@nmss.org.

Individuals can share their story and learn more about multiple sclerosis at MSconnection.org, an online community for making meaningful connections in the movement to end MS. Visitors and members can learn more about MS, upload their own photo and connection to share with others, join or start groups and discussions, find expert MS information and opinions, and download MS awareness tools.

Multiple Sclerosis is an unpredictable, often disabling disease that interrupts the flow of information in the central nervous system, which includes the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerve. The Greater Illinois Chapter mobilizes people and resources to drive research for a cure and to address the challenges of more than 20,000 individuals in Illinois and 2.3 million worldwide affected by MS. For more information visit MSillinois.org

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