Youth Ambassador Summer 2018

Congratulations to Ezra Daly-Griffen !!

This year the Tourette Association of America is hosting a second Youth Ambassador Training. TAA of Greater NY State is very proud to announce that one of our youth members has been selected to attend this training. Congratulations to Ezra Daly-Griffen of South Dayton, NY. Ezra is a student at Pine Valley Central Schools.   For those of you who have attended Camp Ticapalooza, you will surely remember Ezra, our fabulous drummer. Ezra has been very involved in our chapter for several years, coming to many of our chapter events, sitting on a youth panel at a conference for educational personnel, and attending our camp annually. He is always willing to volunteer and lend a helping hand with whatever needs to be done. This training will be held July 13-14, 2018 in San Antonio, Texas. Ezra will be traveling to San Antonio with his mom, Jessamine, one of our long-time and fabulous camp counselors. Ezra’s older sister, Willow, was selected as the chapter Youth Ambassador in 2016 and attended the training in Washington, DC.

We wish Ezra and his mom safe travels to San Antonio and our congratulations on being selected to represent our chapter.

We are so very proud of you, Ezra!!

Gute Reise, Trevor Scott!

TAA of Greater NY State would like to congratulate one of our graduating seniors for some outstanding accomplishments and exciting new adventures. Trevor Scott will graduate next weekend from Onondaga High School near Syracuse.   Trevor’s path has never been easy.   Due to his severe TS symptoms, including coprolalia, he has experienced bullying, teasing and discrimination since I first met him when he was 8 years old. I cried many times after leaving whatever school he was in. I have often wondered where the strength came from, to carry him through these extremely difficult years. Despite all of this adversity, he is graduating high school with honors.  He has been selected as one of our chapter Youth Ambassadors, has sat on panels to educate other people about TS, has attended our annual Camp Ticapalooza for many years, and will be back next year as a junior counselor.  Last year he joined me and two other young adults with TS to speak to the law students at Syracuse University about living with TS.

Trevor’s one dream in life was to travel to Germany on an exchange program. He has been studying German throughout middle and high school and it’s been one of his favorite classes. He applied for the exchange program last year and was told that he could not go because of his severe tics. He was not willing to give up that dream and decided to apply again this year, even though he would have already graduated by the time the trip would take place. His new German teacher not only accepted him but also contacted me to learn everything he could about TS so that Trevor’s trip would be successful and without incident.

In July, Trevor will embark on a month long exchange trip hosted by his school where he will be spending two days in Reykjavik, Iceland, a week in Berlin, and two weekends in Uelzen, in northern German, with a host family. Not surprisingly, he has arranged in advance to do a presentation on TS for the German students at their partner school, Lessing Gymnasium. Trevor will be the only senior on the trip.   He will be attending college in the Syracuse area next year. Pictured here is Trevor and his mother, Shannon, near the Capitol Building in Washington, DC, during his Youth Ambassador training. Please join me in wishing Trevor “Gute Reise” as he heads off to Germany. To all of you dealing with TS on a daily basis, “Don’t ever give up on your dreams.” And to Trevor, you are my hero! Have the time of your life.

WATCH 20/20 THIS FRIDAY MARCH 13th

TSA Greater NY State
20/20 – Friday, March 13
 
Featuring Our Own Isabella Constantino
College Student, Youth Ambassador, Camp Counselor Extraordinaire
Tune in tomorrow, Friday, March 13 at 10:00 pm EST on ABC for “20/20” which will focus on successful individuals in sports and the arts who have TS.
Featured will be actor and National Tourette Syndrome Ambassador Dash Mihok; Olympic swimmer Anthony Ervin and TSA Youth Ambassador Isabella. In addition, Dr. Jonathan Mink, from the University of Rochester, and the co-chair of TSA’s Scientific Advisory Board, will talk about the science behind TS and if it actually does help athletes perform better.
 
You can read more on the “20/20” website here – http://abcnews.go.com/Health/tourette-syndrome-make-superior-athlete/story?id=24977715 – and tune intomorrow to watch the full show.