LANDOVER, Md., Feb. 10, 2020 — Epilepsy Foundation announced the addition of Brazilian-American fashion and beauty entrepreneur Camila Coelho as an END EPILEPSY® Ambassador. Camila will serve as an advocate on behalf of, and for, people living with epilepsy by leveraging her platform to create awareness and educate others about epilepsy and seizures. She is one of 710,000 Latinos in the United States living with epilepsy and she is sharing her story with the world for the first time today, on International Epilepsy Day.
“I’m excited to support the Epilepsy Foundation in its fight to END EPILEPSY,” said Camila. “I have lived with epilepsy since I was a little girl. Every time I had a seizure, I’d wake up in the hospital extremely emotional. When a seizure happens, I don’t know that it’s occurring or remember it after, which makes it harder for my husband, family and friends. But I’ve learned to cope with my epilepsy by working with my medical team to manage this condition, and to one day hopefully create a family of my own. My hope is that others hear my story and know that epilepsy doesn’t have to keep you from pursuing your dreams or leading an enjoyable life.”
Each year there are 150,000 new cases of epilepsy. Over a lifetime, 1 in 10 people will have a seizure, and 1 in 26 in the United States will be diagnosed with epilepsy. The addition of Camila Coelho as an END EPILEPSY Ambassador will help the Epilepsy Foundation expand awareness to multicultural communities throughout the United States.
“We are so excited that Camila has teamed up with us to help raise awareness about epilepsy, particularly among minority communities where epilepsy is even less widely discussed,” said Robert W. Smith, interim chief executive officer of the Epilepsy Foundation. “I’m both impressed and inspired by her commitment to our cause and her willingness to share her story with the world. Thanks to her efforts, we’ll be able to educate even more people about epilepsy and seizures and inspire others to be a part of the fight to END EPILEPSY.”
Camila experienced her first seizure at the young age of 9. She always felt different growing up and rejected herself and her diagnosis, which led her to stop her anti-seizure medication when she was 17 without telling anyone. Not taking her medication caused her to have a seizure in school. Soon after, she realized that taking a medication to keep her safe was nothing compared to what other people go through. That is why she is using her public platform to educate the public about epilepsy and seizures and inspire others to seek help.
“We are hopeful that Camila’s status as a global fashion and beauty mogul will help others share their stories,” said Bradley P. Boyer, Chair, Epilepsy Foundation Board of Directors. “We are committed to END EPILEPSY and give hope to those who live with seizures and fight this battle every day.”
For more information about Camila’s story, visit Epilepsy.com/Camila-Coelho.