The city of Birmingham turned purple on Friday March 25 as the National Centre for Young People with Epilepsy (NCYPE) transformed the Victoria Square fountain, The River, to a glowing purple in celebration of International Purple Day on Saturday, March 26.
The Lord Mayor of Birmingham, Councillor Len Gregory and Lady Mayoress, Mrs. Gillian Gregory also showed their support when the NCYPE popped by with its touring purple ‘60,000’, to mark the number of children and young people living with epilepsy in the UK.
The event, which formed part of the NCYPE’s My Purple Pledge campaign to encourage the UK to embrace all things purple, also saw Manchester’s iconic Town Hall clock and London’s Horses of Helios light up with the signature colour.
Launching on International Purple Day, My Purple Pledge will run up to National Epilepsy Week from 15 to 22 May 2011. A host of famous faces are showing their support and pledging purple including PR consultant Max Clifford, newsreader Nicholas Owen and actor Nathaniel Parker, joined by celebrity tweeters @piersmorgan, @reallorraine and @jessiejofficial, all of whom are speaking out for the charity.
Lisa Farmer, Director of Fundraising at the NCYPE, commented: “Purple has been sweeping the nation and we’re thrilled to have gathered so much support. Even Birmingham’s famous Floozy in the Jacuzzi showed her love for purple in the name of raising awareness of epilepsy in young people.
“Epilepsy is the most common serious neurological disorder in childhood, affecting around one child in every primary school. Here at the NCYPE, our special school, FE college, medical centre and residential homes provide 24-hour care for our young people who are unable to attend mainstream school or live at home with their families. We are the only charity in the UK whose sole focus is in helping young people with epilepsy.”
International Purple Day was established in 2008 by eleven-year-old epilepsy sufferer, Cassidy Megan, in order to provide a support network for all young epilepsy suffers around the world.
You can make a purple pledge by visiting www.mypurplepledge.com. Alternatively if you’d like to make a donation you can do so via JustGiving.com/mypurplepledge. My Purple Pledge can also be followed on Twitter – @purplepledge.
Around 60,000 under 18s across the UK have epilepsy and it is the most common serious childhood neurological condition, with around one in ten (6,000) of these experiencing severe communication, learning or behaviour problems due to their epilepsy. On average there is a child with epilepsy in every primary school and five in every secondary school.