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updated: 4/5/2013 10:35 AM

Cook County Advocate Partners with Regional Libraries to Kick Off Parkinson's Awareness Month

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  • Westchester, IL resident and PDF Research Advocate Rosemary Sammons at the Westchester Public Library with a Parkinson's awareness display featuring free educational resources on the disease.

    Westchester, IL resident and PDF Research Advocate Rosemary Sammons at the Westchester Public Library with a Parkinson's awareness display featuring free educational resources on the disease.

Parkinson's Disease Foundation

Westchester, IL resident Rosemary Sammons is booking the month of April at her local libraries to educate others for Parkinson's Awareness Month. She is partnering with 22 libraries across the Chicago area, including the Westchester Public Library in Westchester, IL to offer free educational resources for the community all month long.

Each year, the Parkinson's Disease Foundation (PDF) encourages people to find creative ways to make a difference during April. Ms. Sammons, 74, who has been living with Parkinson's for more than five years, already volunteers with the organization as a PDF Research Advocate. In this role, she focuses on educating the public about Parkinson's disease research. During April, she is partnering with PDF and local libraries to increase her reach, helping to both raise public awareness and provide general information to those living with Parkinson's disease.

The Westchester Public Library will feature a Parkinson's awareness display, offering free PDF educational materials about the disease and awareness posters. Ms. Sammons has coordinated with 21 other libraries across the Chicago area to also offer educational resources for Parkinson's Awareness Month.

"I can't change the fact that I have Parkinson's disease, but the commitment I made to myself is that I would do whatever I could to help others. Not enough people know about Parkinson's or the need for research. Getting these pamphlets out there in places they haven't been before is a positive drop in the bucket," says Ms. Sammons.

Robin Elliott, Executive Director of PDF, said "At PDF, we are inspired by Ms. Sammons' dedication to raising public awareness and ensuring members of her community have access to the latest information about Parkinson's disease. Her outreach to her library system is a perfect example of the creative ways in which individuals can make a difference in the fight against Parkinson's disease this April."

Those interested in learning more about Ms. Sammons' library displays or ordering free educational materials such as PDF's toolkit, 30 Ways to Raise Awareness of Parkinson's, may contact the Parkinson's Disease Foundation at (800) 457-6676, or

Libraries in the IL communities listed below have coordinated with Ms. Sammons to feature educational resources for Parkinson's Awareness Month:







Downers Grove


Elmwood Park



La Grange

La Grange Park


Melrose Park

North Riverside

Oak Park

River Forest



Western Springs


About Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson's disease is a progressive neurological disorder that affects nearly one million people in the US. Although promising research is being conducted, there is currently no cure for Parkinson's disease.

About Parkinson's Advocates in Research (PAIR)

Parkinson's Advocates in Research (PAIR) is a signature program of the Parkinson's Disease Foundation (PDF). Through in-person trainings and an online course, it provides people touched by Parkinson's disease with the knowledge and skills needed to "pair up" with scientists and health professionals in advancing research and speeding new treatments. The cornerstone of the program is a national network of 200 Research Advocates from 42 states who guide research, address gaps and obstacles, and educate their communities about research. Their areas of expertise include review of clinical study protocols, development of clinical trial recruitment plans and education of support groups about local research opportunities. Learn more about the program and getting involved in Parkinson's disease research by completing PDF's free Parkinson's Advocates in Research online course at

About the Parkinson's Disease Foundation

The Parkinson's Disease Foundation® (PDF®) is a leading national presence in Parkinson's disease research, education and public advocacy. PDF is working for the nearly one million people in the US who live with Parkinson's disease by funding promising scientific research while supporting people living with Parkinson's through educational programs and services. Since its founding in 1957, PDF has dedicated over $96 million to fund the work of leading scientists throughout the world and over $40 million to support national education and advocacy programs.