Last week AAAF launched out theme for the next year – Embrace Alopecia. We figure you probably have questions. That’s okay, because we’ve got answers.
So what is a theme and why does AAAF have one?
Every year AAAF’s Committee gets together at our Annual General Meeting to discuss our programs and brainstorm ways we can continue to improve.. For the last few years we’ve developed themes which guide our efforts through the following twelve months. We keep the theme at the core of all projects, campaigns, competitions and events over that year and it informs how we focus on achieving our key missions – improving awareness, funding research and providing support. Previous themes have been varied, ranging from last year’s art and awareness project, The Bald Canvas, to more general themes like Teens, Families, and Schools. After much discussion, our committee selected Embrace Alopecia as our 2017 Theme.
What does Embrace Alopecia mean?
Whatever you want it to!
We’re not asking for every person with alopecia to abandon their wigs or to talk about their AA on national television. While that might be empowering for some, we know that that’s not everyone’s cup of tea. And that’s okay! Embrace Alopecia is about encouraging communication and acceptance about this condition – in whatever way makes you feel the most comfortable and confident. Everyone’s journey with this condition is different and there is no wrong or right way to Embrace Alopecia.
This program was developed in response to two things that AAAF has learnt in our seven years.
The first was discovered through detailed psychological research into coping strategies and quality of life for people with Alopecia Areata. We found that the number one factor for improving happiness of those living with this condition was acceptance. Those who feel more accepting are happier, have better quality of life and feel more able to reach out if they need help. Those are very important things to us. This project aims to use the power of communication and community to help more people get to a place of acceptance.
The second reason we have launched this project is the question we are asked most often by people newly diagnosed with AA: “Am I the only person with alopecia?” Alopecia is a difficult condition and it’s heartbreaking to think of so many people feeling like they are going through this alone. It is our hope that Embrace Alopecia will build a supportive and communicative environment that these people can reach out to and inspire and empower those who are not yet embracing alopecia to take the steps they need to come to terms with this condition.
How can I get involved?
That was going to be your next question, right? I hope so because we need you to make this thing work!!!
The first thing to do is head over to AAAF’s website and follow the signs to the registry, then pop over to our Facebook page and hit that follow button. We’ll do our best to keep you informed with the happenings here on Love, Alopecia but signing up for direct updates with AAAF is the best way to stay informed about the amazing things we have planned for this program.
There are loads of different ways you can take part over the next 12 months. Even something as simple as liking and sharing our content helps get the conversation started and communication rolling. Posting using our new tag #EmbraceAlopecia will add your voice to our discussion and could get you featured on our channels.
We’ll be running loads of amazing events over the next year that you can attend – or why not host your own? If you’ve got an idea for a great awareness project, fundraiser or just a cool hang out for alopecians in your area, contact firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll help you organise it!
AAAF is always on the lookout for new volunteers to join our outstanding community. If you’re interested in finding out what opportunities we have available for you, get in contact with email@example.com
What does Embrace Alopecia mean to you? What would you like to do to Embrace Alopecia in 2017? Let us know in the comments!