Story of Traumatic Brain Injury Wins #IAmInvisibleNoMore Video Contest
Allsup and Invisible Disabilities Association raise awareness by sharing video stories nationwide
Belleville, Ill. — May 4, 2018 — The Invisible Disabilities Association (IDA), an organization dedicated to raising worldwide awareness of invisible disabilities, and Allsup, the nation’s premier provider of Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) representation, today announced the winners of the #IamInvisibleNoMore video contest, determined by online votes.
The Grand Prize winner garnered more than 1,500 votes during the March contest. Kellie Pokrifka’s concussion changed her life. She became immersed in the world of brain injury recovery and works to help speed others’ healing by making information and resources accessible through the website Concussion Game Plan. Pokrifka will receive a $500 prepaid debit card and a three-day trip for herself and a guest to IDA's 2018 Awards Gala on October 19, 2018, in Denver.
“A lot of people will discount their own injuries,” said Pokrifka. “But, we don’t have to be invisible.”
Video entries documented experiences living with more than 15 invisible disabilities, including concussion, scleroderma, lymphedema, dermatomyositis, psoriatic arthritis, reflex sympathetic dystrophy syndrome, lupus, fibromyalgia, traumatic brain injury, multiple sclerosis and more. Other examples of invisible disabilities and illnesses include heart disease, mental illness, multiple chemical sensitivity and other disorders that are not readily apparent.
The runner-up winners, in order, were Amy Gietzen (scleroderma), Amy Rivera (lymphedema), Kathleen (Kate) Boyle, (dermatomyositis), and Melanie Lech (psoriatic arthritis). They will receive prepaid debit cards in varying amounts.
“The purpose of the video contest was for the entrants to engage their friends, family and community with their personal story via video,” said IDA founder and CEO Wayne Connell. “Our vision at IDA is that people living daily with illness, pain and disability would become Invisible No More. We should allow them to share their stories, validate their journeys of triumphs and valleys of difficulties. And therefore, treat everyone the same, with or without a disability with love, respect and kindness. We all have a story to share.”
Not everyone is aware of invisible disabilities, but many live with these conditions, including many former workers who apply for disability benefits as a result of these and other co-morbid conditions. The most common diagnoses for SSDI beneficiaries are musculoskeletal disorders, including chronic back pain.
ABOUT INVISIBLE DISABILITIES ASSOCIATION
The Invisible Disabilities® Association is about believing. The frequently invisible nature of illness and pain may lead to disbelief about that illness or pain by those surrounding the person who lives daily with invisible disabilities. This disbelief can lead to misunderstandings, rejection by friends, family and health care providers. It may also lead to accusations of laziness or faking an illness. We are passionate about providing awareness that invisible illness, pain and disabilities are very real! Our mission is to encourage, educate and connect people and organizations touched by illness, pain and disability around the globe. Envision with us, a world where people living with illness, pain and disability will be Invisible No More®. Follow us on Facebook.com/InvisibleDisabilities, @invdisabilities on Twitter and instagram.com/invisibledisabilities.