We often tell you about walks and fundraising efforts before they happen, but Jessica Shapiro’s story warrants a follow up article about the success of her Primary Progressive Aphasia Awareness Walk. Jessica raised $6775 in honour of her great-uncle, Robert J. Plumer.
What is Primary Progressive Aphasia?
Primary Progressive Aphasia (PPA) is a neurological condition that leads to a slow decline in language usage and understanding. This is due to tissue deterioration in language centers of the brain.
People with PPA lose their ability to speak, read, write, and/or understand what they hear. Usually people with aphasia resulting from stroke or head injury experience improvement with speech therapy, but this is not the case for people with PPA. However, individuals with PPA may acquire new communication strategies from speech-language pathologists.
Steve Kessler and his wife were at the walk and spoke effusively about their experience:
Barbara and I were delighted by our experience in participating in the walk. Jessica demonstrated unusual leadership for someone that young, and it was moving to spend most of the walk talking to Robert Plumer’s son. Robert’s son and his sister, Joy, provided information regarding Robert’s intelligence. His story is an excellent example of the importance of early learning about aphasia and appropriate therapies.
Congratulations, Jessica, on all of your hard work.