The Schizophrenia Society of Alberta (SSA) set their goals high, literally, when they challenged people to jump out of an airplane.
For the first year, the SSA is running its Thrill Seekers Challenge to raise funds for operations.
People are invited to take part by raising pledges and then sky diving in tandem with the Innisfail BigSky Skydive Club. There are currently 200 people registered province-wide.
Schizophrenia is a biochemical brain disease which results in disordered thinking, delusions, hallucinations, and a lack of energy and motivation.
Symptoms include anxiety, emotional and physical withdrawal, changes in perception that aren’t based in reality and behavioural changes. It hits people in all societies, cultures and races at the same rate.
It’s also been called youth’s greatest disabler as it’s the most disabling single disease that strikes young people. Medications can dramatically improve the lives of those with schizophrenia – although side effects can be serious. For that reason, many often stop taking their medicine.
And sadly, some with schizophrenia remain undiagnosed and end up on the streets because they can’t function without appropriate treatment. But help is available for those with schizophrenia, their friends, families and support networks.
The goal of the Schizophrenia Society of Alberta is to improve the quality of life for people affected by schizophrenia and psychosis through education, support, public policy and research.
Participants in the Thrill Seekers Challenge were asked to raise $500 for the event and the SSA has even garnered some local celebrities to take part.
Local celebrity Chantelle Junker from Kraze FM will be taking part alongside other community celebrities including Craig Larkins, a weather specialist with CTV Morning Live, Edmonton, Russ Empey from Cjay92 in Calgary and Geoff Walker from 98.1 Cam FM in Camrose.
Funds raised will help provide information to people affected by schizophrenia, reduce the stigma and discrimination due to the disease, increase public awareness and understanding and promote research into the cause and treatment of schizophrenia.
To pledge a participant, register to take part or find out more visit www.schizophrenia.ab.ca or contact the schizophrenia society at 403-342-5760.