In your face, migraine!
This week it was my privilege to enjoy a conversation with JP Summers, organizer of In Your Face, Migraine National Pie Challenge to benefit the Migraine Research Foundation. Like many of us who watched the ALS ice bucket challenge spread over social media she wondered what could be done to raise awareness for migraine. As other challenges were getting off the ground, her creativity and enthusiasm were already working overtime on a unique migraine awareness challenge. Summers explained that she had a few criteria in mind. The challenge had to be fun, inexpensive, and entice healthy people to join in.
That’s when she got the idea of a pie challenge. It’s inexpensive, fun, and guaranteed to get a few laughs. Even kids can join in the fun. Because migraine has touched more than one generation of her family, Summers has a passion for spreading awareness about pediatric migraine. She wanted make sure even the youngest patients could participate.
The challenge works just like other challenges you’ve been hearing about. Have someone videotape you accepting the challenge and calling out friends to do the same. Post it online then make a donation to the designated organization. You have two choices. You can take a pie in the face or get a few friends together for a 5-minute pie eating contest. What if you have another pie-themed idea? Summers encourages creativity. The point is to spread awareness, so think “outside the box”.
The suggested donation is $10 to $25 per challenge video. All funds raised through the challenge should go to the Migraine Research Foundation. 100% of all donations to MRF go migraine research in the form of grants awarded to headache specialists and researchers. MRF showcases their award recipients and publishes the results of the studies online.
Naturally, I asked her some pointed questions about how the challenge is being received. Summers reported that most of the response has been positive. Still, some people have wondered about the purpose of getting a pie in your face. She agreed that on the surface it might seem trivial and unrelated to migraine. The challenge wasn’t designed to mimic the symptoms of migraine. It’s more of a sarcastic swipe at migraine, sort of like saying, “Take that, migraine…in your face!”
Summers emphasized that the challenge was not started to compete with any other challenge or fundraiser. “This shouldn’t be a competition,”Summers explains, encouraging all migraineurs to find a way to raise awareness and get people talking about migraine, “We should support one another because we’re all in this together. It’s a cause that we all care about.”
I admit it. I was skeptical. I didn’t know what to expect from this interview. I was pleasantly surprised to find the challenge well-organized with the opportunity for broad appeal. Some might think it’s corny, but so is pouring a bucket of ice over your head. JP Summers has won me over. Her passion is contagious and sincere. It was a honor to meet a kindred spirit.
How much has your migraine disease changed or evolved over time?