Summerland has a new squad in town, working to bring about education and awareness of epilepsy and to combat the stigma surrounding the disorder.
Caitie Shaw, Dan Nixon, Maximilian Von Krosigk and Sylvia Mott make up the Epilepsy Awareness Squad.
Shaw had her first seizure at the age of two and was diagnosed when she was five.
She explained how after spending a week at the Children’s Hospital last summer she met other kids who had more seizures than she did. She felt compelled to do something, to let them know they were not alone.
She decided to hold a garage sale in order to raise money for epilepsy, and her friends helped her out.
It was Nixon’s idea to form the squad.
Since its formation the group has attended markets, bazaars and the Summerland Fall Fair.
They have also spoken to classes at the Summerland Middle School.
This past Saturday night, the Squad hosted a gala at the Sumac Ridge Golf Course.
The proceeds raised went to epilepsy aid programs through the Centre for Epilepsy Education in British Columbia and Free the Children.
The event featured a three-course meal, live entertainment, a silent auction and a mystery game booth.
Speaking about the success of the gala, Von Krosigk said, “We raised $2,000 so how can we complain?”
Nixon said the business community responded with donations for the silent auction.
“The amount of stuff they gave us was so amazing,” he said.
“We could barely put it all on the table,” added Mott.
“It was really awesome, we had 22 baskets,” said Shaw.
The squad has also just produced and posted a video to YouTube, featuring people from all over the world who have epilepsy.
As for something in the future to watch for Shaw said, “It’s International Epilepsy Day — Purple Day — on March 26, so we are thinking of doing an event on that day. We’re just not totally sure where yet.”