It will take more than just a few people to raise awareness about IC. Every patient out there should take a moment to look at their community, their state and country and ask themselves “what do we need here to better serve IC patients?” Are your doctors educated enough about IC? If not, then let’s try to change that by bringing an CME course to the area. Are community members and/or employers compassionate to the needs of patients? If not, then let’s try to get some stories in a local newspaper that encourage compassion and support.
You are the eyes and ears of your community and, more importantly, what you do today will influence how IC patients the future are treated. Do you want any more patients to be told that IC is all in their heads? Do you want more women to undergo completely inappropriate hysterectomies only to discover that their pain is coming from their bladders?? Do you want children with IC to be punished by their teachers for asking to use the restroom?? If not, then let’s do something about it TOGETHER!
Ten Easy Ways You Can Be Involved
1. SHARE OUR POSTERS
One of the easiest things you can do is just put up our poster at your local church, coffee shop or, better yet, send it to all of your doctors and ask them to post it so that other patients can learn about IC. Use the poster on the back cover of your Summer 2014 IC Optimist or print out and share our official poster
2. FACEBOOK, TWEET, PINTEREST & INSTAGRAM IT UP!
We also have Facebook Profile and Timeline pictures that you can use!
3. DARE THE PRESS TO COVER IC
Ask your local newspaper to do a story on IC and IC Awareness Month. We’ve prepared a simple, two page press release (featuring Dr. Rob Moldwin) you can send to them, ideally with a paragraph about your own personal story. Newspapers love to discuss how lives have been changed, for better or for worse. You can use your own name or ask them to use a pseudonym. Download the official press release here!
4. POSTER & MEME CONTESTS NOW OPEN
2015 Poster Contest
– Bring out your inner artist and create a poster for IC Awareness Month sharing your own interpretation of life with IC. Light or dark, floral or portrait, encouraging & hopeful or a message about how IC has changed your life, every patient poster tells an important story that helps spread the word about IC. We welcome all mediums, electronic or in print. All ages are welcome and we especially enjoy posters made by children! All posters will be added to our website and the winner will receive a Kindle Fire! Runner’s ups will receive Amazon or ICN Gift Certificates.
#1 – It must say IC Awareness Month and include the URL: icawareness.org
#2 – It must fit on an 8.5 by 11” piece of paper
Entries by September 31, 2015 to firstname.lastname@example.org or can be mailed to: IC Network, 5636 Del Monte Court, Santa Rosa CA 95409
2015 Meme Contest –
Funny, irreverent, witty, bold and often ridiculous, meme’s make a statement. A funny or shocking meme can be shared thousands of times across the internet where they could inspire patients to actually google IC. Last year, Tali Keteri created a fabulous meme contest that broke records and we’re doing it again this year.
Memes are easy to make! Just go to: http://www.someecards.com, pick your image and play! Use #icawarenessmonth and share your meme on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and anywhere else you frequent. Also e-mail it to email@example.com.
If you have room, make sure that your meme says: icawareness.org
The winner will receive a kindle fire!
5. HIT UP LOCAL RADIO & TV STATIONS
Radio and TV stations love to do public service announcements! We’ve got four scripts that can be used for a simple, easy PSA to share info on IC. Sample public service announcements
6. DONATE AN IC BOOK TO YOUR LOCAL LIBRARY
If you tried to get information on IC and visited your local library, you probably found ZILCH! Yes, that’s right, most public libraries do not carry books on IC unless a patient or a support group donates one or two. So, think about making a gift of a book to a local library! Click here for some book ideas!
7. ASK FOR PROCLAMATIONS
Ask your City Council, County Board of Supervisors, State, Provincial or National legislators to pass a Proclamation to honor IC Awareness Month. We’ve made this as easy as possible with a pre written proclamation! Use the copy in your IC Optimist or print it out here!
8. START A SUPPORT GROUP OR SUPPORT ONE NEAR YOU!
Donate to a local support group that is serving IC patients – They can use stamps, cash or even book donations for low income patients. If there’s no group near you, please start one. Learn how in the ICN Support Group Resource Center.
9. EDUCATE OTHERS WITH OUR NEW IC FACT SHEETS
The ICN has developed a new series of fact sheets for 2014. Share them with your family, friends and medical care providers here! Free downloads here!
10. WEAR YOUR PRIDE
Wear your pride with our official IC Awareness Month pins, silicon bracelets and, in next week, IC Awareness Month Car Magnets. Available in the ICN Shop
|Awareness Pins||Awareness Bracelets||Car Magnets|