The Epilepsy Foundation announced Friday (Nov. 10) that EVANESCENCE singer Amy Lee has agreed to be the American Chair of the international "Out of the Shadows" campaign, a global effort to increase epilepsy awareness, raise additional funds for research, eliminate stigma, and end discrimination against those with the condition.
The "Out of the Shadows" campaign — sponsored by the World Health Organization, the International League Against Epilepsy, and the International Bureau for Epilepsy — is supported by health organizations throughout the world, including the Epilepsy Foundation.
"I'm committed to this cause because epilepsy affects someone very dear to me, and I'm humbled to know that I can be a catalyst for change. I can help enlighten people about the condition and erase their fears about reacting when someone has a seizure," said Lee. "If more people knew how common it was, maybe we could raise more money for research to cure it."
Watch a video clip of Amy Lee talking about the "Out of the Shadows" campaign at this location.
Epilepsy, which affects nearly three million people in the United States, is the most common neurological condition in children and the third most common in adults. There are many forms of epilepsy and many available therapies, but none of them are cures. The condition can strike anyone at any age, and with today's population it is a growing problem in children and the elderly.
As a classically trained pianist, lead singer and songwriter for EVANESCENCE, Lee helped the band earn two Grammy awards in 2004 for Best New Artist and Best Hard Rock Performance for "Bring Me to Life". Lee and EVANESCENCE recently released their new single, "Call Me When You're Sober", as well as the new album, "The Open Door".
"By adding Amy Lee's voice to a growing international epilepsy movement, we have taken a dramatic new step towards eliminating stigma and discrimination, particularly among teens and young adults," said Eric Hargis, President and CEO of the Epilepsy Foundation."
The Out of the Shadows web site and toll-free hotline (888-886-EPILepsy) are keystones of the awareness and fundraising effort. Visitors can learn about Amy Lee's personal commitment to bringing epilepsy out of the shadows, through audio, visual, and interactive elements. The site will also provide a means for people to donate to the cause, and learn more about epilepsy and seizures.
The Epilepsy Foundation, a national non-profit with affiliated organizations throughout the United States, has led the fight against epilepsy since 1968. The Foundation's goals are to ensure that people with seizures are able to participate in all life experiences; and to prevent, control and cure epilepsy through research, education, advocacy and services, so not another moment is lost to seizures.
For additional information, visit www.epilepsyfoundation.org.