Apr 1 Written By Larry Gifford13-17 Minuten

Vancouver, BC Canada – April 1, 2022 – More than 80 Parkinson’s disease organizations and thousands of advocates from 83 countries announce the launch of ‘The Spark,’ a new international symbol for Parkinson’s awareness, to increase conversation and public awareness around the world’s fastest growing neurological disease. The symbol will be promoted and shared around the world during World Parkinson’s Day on Monday, April 11, 2022. 

The Spark, inspired by dopamine – a critical electro-chemical neurotransmitter that people with the disease are striving to retain – will be used to energize a global movement and inspire urgency, unity, and hope to end Parkinson’s Disease. 

“The who’s who of Parkinson’s combine forces under a new symbol to keep the disease top of mind for everyone. The Spark is intended to electrify a powerful movement changing how all of us think about this disease. We want to break the stigma around Parkinson’s. We’re leading a louder call to fund medical breakthroughs. And together – we’re striving to put Parkinson’s in the past,” said Larry Gifford, President and co-founder of Global Alliance to End Parkinson’s Disease (also known as the PD Avengers). 

“We want to break the stigma around Parkinson’s. We’re leading a louder call to fund medical breakthroughs. And together – we’re striving to put Parkinson’s in the past”

— Larry Gifford, President of Global Alliance to End Parkinson’s Disease PD Avengers


●      Parkinson’s Disease is the fastest growing neurological condition in the world. 

●      Parkinson’s is indiscriminate regarding gender, sex, ethnicity, age, and geography.

●      Up to 10% of People with Parkinson’s are diagnosed in their 40’s or younger.

●      Parkinson’s is caused by a combination of genes, environmental and lifestyle influences. The interaction of all three components determines if someone will develop Parkinson’s.

●      Currently, there is no cure.

●      The herbicide and pesticide Paraquat are among the toxins linked to increased risk of the onset of Parkinson’s disease. It is banned in dozens of countries including China and the UK, where they continue to manufacture the product. While a teaspoon is lethal for a human being, more 7-million pounds of Paraquat were used on crops in the United States in 2015 and that number is steadily increasing year after year.

●      Parkinson’s is a misunderstood disease, and the lack of awareness makes people with Parkinson’s vulnerable and discriminated against. People with Parkinson’s earn less money, have difficulty obtaining and retaining employment despite qualifications and ability. They often have to retire early. The symptoms of the disease, mean people with the disease are often mistaken for being intoxicated and in some countries are considered to be cursed by witches. Many live in constant pain. They often lose their voice, their confidence, the luxury of sleep and their ability to control their automatic functions, their limbs, and their future.


This World Parkinson’s Day, we are calling on those impacted by the disease to stand up, speak out and unite to end Parkinson’s. People can join our movement by sharing The Spark with friends, family and on social media channels on Monday, April 11, 2022. 

Every organization, individual or group who want is encouraged to share The Spark in their campaign, event, or communications around World Parkinson’s Day and beyond. The Spark toolkit can be downloaded here People can either personalize The Spark or share one of dozens of pre-made graphics. 


The Spark was conceived by a coalition of global patient and advocacy organizations who are all seeking to end Parkinson’s Disease. 

 “The EPDA is incredibly proud to be a part of this incredibly unique global coalition of Parkinson’s organizations. We all have the same goal: for the ’Spark’ logo to, over time, help the Parkinson’s community speak with one voice on World Parkinson’s Day – thereby amplifying our own individual voices, and creating a bigger impact globally year after year. People with Parkinson’s and their families cannot wait for change to happen to them. We need to create that change ourselves, and we hope this logo will be an important step in that direction,” said Dominic Graham, Operations Director, European Parkinson’s Disease Association (EPDA).

“We know the power of the Parkinson’s community cannot be understated. It’s the spark of the community coming together in a multitude of ways, including through this global alliance of Parkinson’s organizations, which has transformed Parkinson’s research into what it is today. And it’s this community coming together that will help realize new breakthroughs that are right around the corner for people and families with Parkinson’s,” said Debi Brooks, CEO and Co-Founder of The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research.

“Parkinson’s is the fastest growing neurological condition in the world, and it needs to be recognised as an urgent health priority. I hope that this year’s World Parkinson’s Day will be the spark that creates a sense of urgency within international health agencies, governments, and leads to significant investment in to research for treatments that change the progression of Parkinson’s.  It is time to end Parkinson’s,” said Helen Matthews, Deputy CEO, Cure Parkinson’s

The Spark was designed in partnership with Franklyn (, a creative studio based in Brooklyn, New York. The six-month effort was comprehensive and engaged a global community of PD patients and advocates. 

“This was a tall task as whatever symbol we crafted for the global PD community had to be simple, urgent, and tied to the disease itself. Creating a logomark that is also customizable and truly ‘open-source’ – anyone can download it, draw it, draw on it and use it to tell their own stories – is also what makes it powerful, personal, and deeply emotional,” said Michael Freimuth, the Co-Founder of Franklyn.

To share The Spark and join the movement to end Parkinson’s, visit

We encourage all media to use The Spark and the digital assets found here, to help debut the symbol to audiences worldwide beginning April 1st, on World Parkinson’s Day and as a symbol of Parkinson’s Awareness when appropriate throughout the year. 


Organizations which are supporting The Spark include (in alphabetical order): 

1.      Alianza Iberoamericana de Parkinson (Spanish Speaking Countries)

2.     APDA American Parkinson’s Disease Association (United States)

3.     APDA Massachusetts (United States)

4.     APDA Northwest (Pacific Northwest of United States)

5.     Asociația “Mai puternici decât boala Parkinson” (Romania)

6.     Associazione Italiana Giovani Parkinsoniani (Italy)

7.      BC Brain Wellness Program (Canada)

8.     Brian Grant Foundation (United States)

9.     Canadian Open Parkinson Network (Canada)

10.   Charco Neurotech (United Kingdom)

11.   Comitato Italiano Parkinson (Italy)

12.   Con P de Parkinson (Spain)

13.   Cure Parkinson’s (United Kingdom)

14.   Davis Phinney Foundation (United States)

15.   Empower Parkinson’s  (Canada)

16.   Ending Parkinson’s Disease Book  (United States & Netherlands)

17.   Entraidons-nous (French-Canadian/Quebec, Canada)

18.   EPDA | European Parkinson’s Disease Association  (Europe)

19.   European Parkinson’s Therapy Centre (Italy)

20.  Fuerte Es La Vida, Parkinson No Limits (Spain)

21.   Hilde-Ulrichs Foundation (Germany)

22.   IMPACT Parkinson’s (British Columbia)

23.   IPDGC – international Parkinson Disease Genomics Consortium – (Africa)

24.  It’s Not Funny (Australia)

25.   LARGE-PD Latin American Research Consortium of Parkinson’s Disease (Latin America)

26.  Living Better with Parkinson’s (Canada)

27.   LSVT Global (United States)

28.  Mediflix (United States)

29.  Move4YPD (Netherlands)

30.  Neuro Heroes (United Kingdom)

31.   Pacific Parkinson’s Research Centre (British Columbia) 

32.   Pacific Parkinson’s Research Institute (British Columbia)

33.   Parkinson Alliance (United States)

34.  Parkinson Association of Alberta (Canada)

35.   Parkinson Canada (Canada)

36.  Parkinson Place (United States)

37.   Parkinson Society British Columbia (Canada)

38.  Parkinson Society Nova Scotia (Canada)

39.  Parkinson Society Southwestern Ontario  (Canada)

40.  Parkinson Wellness Project – PWP  (United States)

41.   Parkinson Wellness Project – PWP  (Canada)

42.  Parkinsong (Austria)

43.  Parkinsonline (Austria)

44.  Parkinson’s Africa (Africa)

45.  Parkinson’s Alliance (United States)

46.  Parkinson’s Art (United Kingdom)

47.   Parkinson’s Association of West Michigan (United States)

48.  Parkinson’s Australia (Australia)

49.  Parkinson’s Disease Patients Welfare Society (Kolkata, India)

50.  Parkinson’s Foundation (United States)

51.   Parkinson’s International Foundation (United States)

52.   Parkinson’s Resources (Pacific Northwest of United States)

53.   Parkinson’s Si Buko Uganda (Uganda)

54.  Parkinson’s UK (United Kingdom) 

55.   Parkinson’s Unity Walk (United States)

56.  Parky Life (United Kingdom)

57.   PD Avengers Scotland (United Kingdom)

58.  PD Avengers Puerto Rico (Unincorporated Territory of the United States)

59.  PD Buzz (United States)

60.  PD Warrior (Australia)

61.   Ping Pong Parkinson (United States)

62.  PMD Alliance | Parkinson & Movement Disorder Alliance (United States)

63.  Power Over Parkinson’s (United States)

64.  Rosy Gallery (Tokyo, Japan) 

65.  Schluss Mit Parkinson PD Avengers (Germany)

66.  Shake it Up (Australia) 

67.   Shaky Nation (United States)

68.  Shaky Radio (United Kingdom)

69.  Sport Parkinson’s (United Kingdom)

70.   Spotlight YOPD (United Kingdom)

71.   Stop, Parkinson România ! (Romania)

72.   STOPD – (NY & LA) – Theatre for PD (United States)

73.   Surrey Neuroplasticity Clinic (Canada)

74.   The Michael J. Fox Foundation (United States)

75.   The Parkinson Games (Netherlands)

76.   Tightrope Impro Theatre – Improv for Parkinson’s (Canada)

77.   Trepetlika Parkinson’s Disease Society of Slovenia (Slovenia)

78.   Twitchy Woman (United States)

79.   University of Dundee (United Kingdom)

80.  Unshakeable MD (Canada)

81.   U-Turn Parkinsons (Canada)

82.  Voice Aerobics, LLC (United States)

83.  When Life Gives You Parkinson’s (Canada)

84. (Italy)

85.  Women’s Parkinson Project (Ireland & United States)

86.  World Parkinson’s Congress (Spain)

87.   World Parkinson’s Coalition (United States)

88.  World Parkinson’s Program (Canada)

89.  Yes! And Exercise (United States)

90.  Yuvedo Foundation (Germany)


“The Davis Phinney Foundation is proud to participate in this global partnership to increase awareness of Parkinson’s. Awareness, health literacy, and community support are just as critical to our mission of helping people with Parkinson’s live well today as they are to ultimately ending Parkinson’s, and we stand in solidarity with the call to increase advocacy, reduce stigma, and change the way people live with Parkinson’s.” 

– Polly Dawkins, Executive Director, Davis Phinney Foundation

“Parkinson Association of Alberta is a proud member of a united international community of people living with or loving someone with Parkinson disease. On World Parkinson’s Day 2022, we join together to spark conversation and understanding of the condition and those affected.” 

– Lana Tordoff, Executive Director, Parkinson Association of Alberta

“‘Don’t tell anyone I have Parkinson’s!’. Over and over again I hear these words. Stigma stops people going out, exercising, getting treatment and socialising which leads to inactivity and depression. It seals their fast decline. I will not hide! I exercise and get back what I lost. I will not except stigma! I am worthy of love just as much as anyone.” 

– Christine Jayachandran, Founder, Alianza Iberoamericana de Parkinson

“We are excited to follow the fear, failure, and fun as a group, sparking new connections and resources for all to connect and live better together!” 

– Robert Cochrane, CEO/Founder, Yes, And…eXercise!

“It is only through global collaboration that we will find the answers to prevent, slow and stop Parkinson’s in it tracks. Let’s unite and light up the Spark to put an end to Parkinson’s.” 

– Clyde Campbell AM, Founder & CEO of Shake It Up Australia Foundation

“LSVT Global, Inc. is committed to efficacious rehabilitation for PD globally.” 

– Cynthia Fox, PhD, CEO, LSVT Global

“We at Shaky Nation are delighted to be a small part of World Parkinson’s Disease Day 2022 and the unveiling of the Spark! If you haven’t yet found a tribe of likeminded people with Parkinson’s Disease, come check us out. Let’s make some Sparks!” 

– Steve Phillips, founder of Shaky Nation

“Spark is a brilliant idea. I hope it will spark a sleeping community around the globe into a wildfire of activity that will lead us into slowing down the progression and finding a cure as soon as humanly possible. We didn’t conquer Parkinson, but we are conquering the fear of Parkinson. Tulip never impressed me. SPARK does it for me!”

– Nenad Bach, founder & president PingPongParkinson®