To help kick off Parkinson’s Awareness Month, The Michael J. Fox Foundation (MJFF) recently hosted a Facebook Watch Party of our latest film, “Friends to Lean On.” Hundreds tuned in from around the globe for a shared viewing experience, reacting, commenting and interacting in real time. After the live screening, we debuted an exclusive behind-the-scenes interview with Michael J. Fox, the film’s director (and MJFF Board member) Nelle Fortenberry, and MJFF co-founder Debi Brooks. (See the full interview here.)
The film features members of the Parkinson’s community who were connected through The Michael J. Fox Foundation. You’ll hear their stories as they trace the relationships they’ve formed, the support systems they’ve built and ultimately, how they’ve helped broaden the reach of our mission.
MJFF Patient Council member Karen Jaffe explains how a Parkinson’s diagnosis “marks the beginning of a new life.” She kept her disease secret for a while, until she decided, “I wanted and needed to talk with someone who was walking in my same shoes. That’s when the Foundation staff introduced me to a patient my age, working in my same profession; my first friend with PD. She helped me tremendously.”
As the film illustrates, Parkinson’s doesn’t signal the end of positive beginnings; sometimes it can even forge new ones. Join our community to find ways to get involved and make meaningful connections.