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Harker Heights Evening Star
Harker Heights Evening Star

Heights Teen becomes advocate for Tourette Syndrome

Heights Teen becomes advocate for Tourette Syndrome

Sixteen year-old Harker Heights resident, Lucy Wolf , will be attending Tourette Association of America “2016 National Education & Advocacy Conference” in Arlington, VA.  From March 8-13, this week-long event will bring together teens, families and top Tourette Syndrome (TS) medical experts and researchers in an effort to build political awareness, provide educational training and share vital resources for a widely misunderstood and stigmatized disorder.

“Even though it’s estimated that one in 100 school-aged children in the United States has TS or a related Tic Disorder, the wide range of symptoms that include both motor and vocal tics can lead to bullying, isolation and lifelong learning or emotional issues,” said, Ariane Sloan, Senior Account Executive, King + Company. “After National Advocacy Day, Lucy will return to Texas prepared to educate peers and local community on how to promote understanding and social acceptance of TS and its symptoms, by presenting to schools, clubs and community centers.”

The Youth Ambassador Training and National Advocacy Day will take place March 8-10, and is part of the Association’s Youth Ambassador Program. Wolf will also participate in this program which empowers teens to spread awareness and acceptance for TS. Youth Ambassadors will complete a comprehensive training designed to equip Youth Ambassadors with the tools they need to speak publicly about the often misunderstood disorder.  The ambassadors will also participate in 100-150 congressional meetings during the Association’s National Advocacy Day on March 10.

“This year, 47 teens have been selected from around the country to participate in the training and 9th annual National Advocacy Day on Capitol Hill on March 10. These teens will share their personal stories with representatives in D.C. and then return to their hometowns to raise funds and advocate for public policies and services that promote positive school, work and social environments for individuals affected by the disorder,” commented, Sloan.

“Having been misdiagnosed at the age of 14, I’ve realized that there isn’t enough research in the field of Tourette Syndrome,” said, Lucy Wolf, “If there was more research conducted before my misdiagnoses, then I wouldn’t have had doctors telling me that I was faking it to get attention and that I was crazy for making noises that I didn’t want to make. Because of this experience, I would like to be neurologist when I’m older!”

Wolf started having symptoms of TS when she was 14. She had to go to numerous doctors and many tests to conclude what she had. After her diagnosis, Wolf applied to the Tourette’s Syndrome of America to be an ambassador.

“I’m really excited to get this opportunity to spread awareness about Tourette’s Syndrome,” commented, “And how this might help with more research and raise funds to find out more about TS. treatments and cures.”


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