WINNING KID PROGRAM

The "Winning Kid" is a youth with epilepsy who is recognized as a leader in the epilepsy community and has shown committed to raising awareness for other youth with epilepsy. 

A new winning kid is selected annually each summer. For a one-year term, they attend various EFMN-hosted events to share their story and help raise epilepsy awareness. They also travel to Washington D.C. with EFMN to participate in the national program Teens Speak Up! and to meet with their congressional representative about issues affecting youth with epilepsy.  

To be eligible, winning kids need to be able to share their journey with epilepsy & be a leader to all youth. For more information, contact Nikki Baker at nbaker@efmn.org.

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Meet Abby Ackerman - this year's Winning Kid!

Abby is 14 years old and lives with her parents and 2 younger siblings. Abby had her first seizure at 8 months old, and was diagnosed with infantile spasms. Though her future prognosis looked challenging in areas of development, through the next several years - and after trying several different treatment methods - Abby was able to gain control of her seizures. She was a bit behind with motor skills and some learning areas, but overall was doing pretty well! She remained seizure free until about the age of seven, at which point her seizures returned - which helped her doctors finally figure out she has a rare neurological disorder that was not only causing her seizures, but the other challenges as well. Abby is currently on medication and is working on maintaining seizure control.

Throughout all of this, Abby has kept a pretty positive attitude! Abby has a strong and vibrant personality, which has helped her overcome many of the challenges of living with seizures.

Since the age of seven Abby has been an active member of the EFMN community; she is a long time Camp Oz camper, a returning participant in our Art Therapy program, has attended several family events, and is a member of the Shining Star program. Through these experiences, Abby has had the opportunity to meet and make friend with other kids with epilepsy! Outside of EFMN, Abby enjoys theater, swimming, riding her bike, watching movies, and hanging out with friends.

With the support of her family and friends, Abby has courageously embraced living with epilepsy. EFMN is so excited to have Abby as our Winning Kid and the Ackerman family involved with sharing their story. Throughout her time as Winning Kid, Abby will get the opportunity to be a leader in this community and even at a national level. We are honored to have her as part of the foundation.

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