Talk about Epilepsy!

Forget the World Cup and Wimbledon this month because the real talking point for 40,000 people with epilepsy in Scotland will be National Epilepsy Week, 13-19 June.

Thousands of Scottish households listening to local community radio stations can sing along to Paolo Nutini’s backing track promoting Epilepsy Scotland’s helpline. This digitally mastered advert was produced for free by Cuillin fm on Skye.

Dozens of MSPs will chat with teen model and Epilepsy Scotland ambassador Rosie Gilmour who is speaking at the charity’s National Epilepsy Week parliamentary reception and book launch on 16 June, attended by Public Health Minister Shona Robison.  Nearly 3,000 nurseries and primary schools across Scotland will then be able to order these two new illustrated books written for 2-7 year olds that explain more about epilepsy. 

This week, individual fundraisers will abseil from Glasgow’s Titan Crane or parachute jump in St Andrews to get people talking about epilepsy.  Epilepsy support groups from across Scotland will also gather in Dundee to form a national network that speaks for people with epilepsy.  Thanks to various awareness-raising events by Epilepsy Scotland and its supporters, thousands of people (and pounds) will be involved in this annual event, which this year draws attention to issues for the under 25s.

Chief Executive Lesslie Young said: ”The younger you are when you learn about epilepsy, the more accepting you will be. The result is less fear, social stigma and better informed public attitudes – which has to be good!  We are also highlighting the need for improved transition services.  We want to ensure these young adults are afforded the best care seamlessly and without additional stress so they can live their lives to the full.  There is a great deal of general uncertainty at the moment which is having a significant impact on young people living with epilepsy in Scotland.  We hope policy makers and politicians will act swiftly to ensure this is short-lived and the essential changes happen; not simply talk about it. 


Notes to the editor

1.  Epilepsy Scotland works with people affected by epilepsy to ensure that their voice is heard.  We campaign for improved healthcare, better information provision and an end to stigma.  This common serious neurological condition affects one in 130 people.  We represent nearly 40,000 Scots with epilepsy, their families and carers. 

2.  Our freephone Helpline (0808 800 2200) offers advice, support and information.  People can email (, text 07786 209501, or download information from our website: 

3.  National Epilepsy Week, 13-19 June 2010 will focus on epilepsy and the under 25s.  For a second year, Cuillin fm has prepared a National Epilepsy Week advert for Scottish community radio stations.  The advert is available in English and Gaelic.  Presenter Barbara Mackenzie convinced Dan Ogden, Junior Sync Manager with Warner Chappell Music Limited and his colleague Dale Cornish, Licensing Executive with Warner Music UK to grant permission for Paolo Nutini’s ‘Simple Things’ to be used as a free backing track.  Fellow presenter Denis Blackham mastered the advert while teenage presenters Ruairidh Cormack and John Gillies recorded the script.  Arthur and Shona Cormack helped translate the script for the Gaelic advert. 

4.  Teenager Rosie Gilmour will be speaking at Epilepsy Scotland’s evening reception and book launch in the Scottish Parliament’s Garden Lobby on Wednesday 16 June. Read her story at

5.  On 17 June, MSPs will take part in a National Epilepsy Week photo call following First Minister’s Question Time to raise parliamentary awareness.

6.  Epilepsy Scotland’s new illustrated books tell the story of a parent having epilepsy (Brian learns about epilepsy) and a child developing epilepsy (Farah and Ted visit the hospital).   Both were drawn by professional children’s illustrator Doreen Shaw.  Drawings will be on show at the National Epilepsy Week parliamentary reception.

7.  Epilepsy Scotland is a JEC (Joint Epilepsy Council of the UK and Ireland) member and is staffing the JEC’s exhibition stand in the Garden Lobby from 15-17 June.

8.  For more details and under 25s case studies please contact: Allana Parker, Communications Manager on: 0141 419 1701 or 07884 012 147.

Website: http://www.