Florida Teen Works to Increase Tourette's Syndrome Awareness

August 20, 2018

Youth Ambassador of the Tourette Association of America educates communities, elected officials, schools, extracurricular programs, and peers about Tourette's and Tic Disorders.

Marti Bennett, 17, of Hollywood, Florida has known all her life that few people understand Tourette's Syndrome.  When she was 15, while taking an exam, a misinformed teacher reprimanded her, “Can't you stop making noises?”  That was when it clicked.  She knew she had to make people more aware of Tourette's Syndrome so other kids and teens wouldn't have to go through what she had endured throughout her youth and adolescence.

The opportunity to do just that presented itself when Marti learned about the Tourette Association's through her parents, who are members of the Tourette Association and very supportive of their daughter.  Marti applied for the program and was accepted.

Marti completed a training course in Washington, DC, and is trained in Tourette's Syndrome and Tic Disorders advocacy, including facilitating trainings and presentations for students, teachers, administrators, elected officials, and more.  She has lobbied on Capitol Hill to request funding for Tourette's Syndrome from local representatives.

Over 500,000 children in the US ages 5-17 are estimated to have Tourette's Syndrome and Tic Disorders.  That's 1 in every 100 youths.  Marti's mission is to make sure that they receive the support and advocacy they need to thrive.  To invite Marti to speak at your school or for your organization, contact her at [email protected]/

 

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