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Access:Ability May 2024 Newsletter

The May 2024 edition of the Ability Central monthly e-newsletter, Access:Ability.

American Stroke Month

A concerned female pharmacist with short white hair recognizes early stroke symptoms when she holds a young woman in an orange sweater to keep her from falling

American Stroke Month: Stroke Prevention and Recovery Resources

Did you know stroke is the number two cause of death worldwide? Stroke is also a leading cause of disability, with far-reaching physical and cognitive consequences that create a long road to recovery. 

Since the first-ever American Stroke Month in 1989, May has been a time for people in the United States to learn more about stroke symptoms, prevention, and recovery. 

The American Heart Association (AHA) has lobbied for greater national awareness about the danger of strokes since the 1950s. Working with other nonprofits, the AHA successfully brought stroke awareness to the federal scale in 1989, when President George H. W. Bush made American Stroke Month a national observance. Less than a decade later, the AHA formed the American Stroke Association (ASA), an organization dedicated to expanding stroke awareness and research in the United States. 

Today, organizations like Ability Central have joined the fight all over the world to improve stroke awareness and treatment. This May, arm yourself with stroke knowledge through Ability Central’s stroke resources: 

Global Accessibility Awareness Day

A visually impaired Black man with close-cropped black hair controls his computer via the keyboard while talking to a Black woman in a pink shirt sitting beside him

May 16th is Global Accessibility Awareness Day!

The 13th Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) is right around the corner. Created in 2011, GAAD’s purpose is to get people talking, thinking, and learning about digital access and inclusion for people with disabilities.

On the third Thursday in May, organizations all over the world like the GAAD Foundation fuel conversations about online access for the more than 1 billion people with disabilities worldwide. The focal point of this holiday is digital accessibility, practices and processes that make it easier for people with disabilities to independently access and interact with content all over the web. 

This year, Ability Central is getting in on the action with an exciting new digital accessibility resource collection. Keep an eye on social media to be the first to access these new digital accessibility tools for journalists, content creators, and anyone who creates or consumes online media!

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Apraxia Awareness Day

A white female speech therapist with short blonde hair examines the throat of a white man in a plaid shirt who has suddenly lost the ability to speak

Apraxia Awareness Day: Educate Yourself on May 14th 

May 14th is Apraxia Awareness Day! Like other educational observances, Apraxia Awareness Day shines a spotlight on apraxia, a neurological motor speech disorder that disrupts communication between the brain and the parts of our bodies related to speech.

Apraxia takes away the ability to coordinate and perform purposeful movements, like moving the lips, tongue, and cheeks to form words and sounds. Some people develop apraxia in childhood, and others struggle with speech following a brain injury like stroke, a brain tumor, or dementia. 

Apraxia is not always a permanent condition, but the road to recovery can be a long one. Learn more about apraxia symptoms, causes, and recovery in Ability Central’s comprehensive guide, Apraxia and Dyspraxia: Understanding Motor Speech Disorders.

Resource Round-up

Lou Gehrig’s Disease (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, or ALS)

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) Awareness Month, also celebrated in May, raises awareness about Lou Gehrig’s disease, a degenerative motor neuron disease known for its sudden onset and rapid progression.

This rare and fatal nervous system disease affects nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord, causing loss of muscle control, issues with mobility, and the eventual wasting away of critical muscles in the limbs, abdomen, and chest. 

Learn more about ALS and the fight for a cure in these Ability Central resources.

8 Things You Should Know About Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)

A pink-tinted image of a tech in black scrubs starting an MRI scan for a man covered with a thick brown blanket

ALS is a devastating neurological condition. Ability Central shares quick facts about the disease.

Read more on the Ability Central Portal.

ALS First Steps: What to Do After a Diagnosis

A Closeup of white slippers and gray pants as a person uses a walker to navigate around their home

Learn about treatment options, the value of the National Registry, and why you should consider joining clinical trials or research projects after an ALS diagnosis.

Read more on the Ability Central Portal.

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