World MS Day
For over 25 years, Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, has been working to better understand Multiple Sclerosis (MS) from the inside out, by delivering solutions that improve the lives of all those affected by it. First launched in 2009 by the MS International Federation (MSIF), World MS Day is an important moment for us to join forces with other organisations and build global connections to support the MS community.
WORLD MS DAY 2022 – 2023
Since 2020, #MSConnections has been the theme for the MS International Federation’s annual World MS Day, being held this year on Tuesday, May 30th. Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, is proud to again support their global campaign with a mix of internal and external initiatives.
In 2022, we first created employee teams across the globe to participate in MSIF’s annual The May 50K, raising funds to support MS research. For 2023, we will bolster our efforts to encourage our fellow employees and friends to join the challenge, going beyond our own teams. We’ll feature our efforts on our corporate Social Media channels and invite our followers to learn more about how to engage with activities taking place in May.
Follow us on Twitter as well as our Linkedin page, and remember to use the hashtags #MSConnections and #MSInsideOut when sharing your posts in support of this important annual awareness campaign.
World MS Day 2021
In support of the MS International Federation’s annual World MS Day, our 2021 campaign encouraged people to #MoveForMS with a ‘virtual’ relay of challenges at all levels that asked participants to #MoveForMS across multiple social media platforms, raising money and awareness in support of those affected by Multiple Sclerosis. With our campaign, social media influencers and Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany ambassadors kicked off a relay in early May with their own fun activity for people to try, then “played it forward” inviting others to join in during the campaign, all in support of World MS Day.
World MS Day 2020
To mark World MS Day 2020, we supported MS International Federation (MSIF)`s campaign #MSConnections, which sets out to challenge social barriers, celebrate support networks and build community connection.
On May 28th, 2020, we announced a global collaboration with Twitch, the world's leading service and community for multiplayer entertainment, for World MS Day May 30th.
In support of World MS Day and to show our commitment to understanding MS from the inside out, we joined forces with Twitch. Through an 8-hour live stream with Twitch influencers and special guests on May 30, 2020, Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, and Twitch gave back to the MS community by virtually connecting people affected by the disease and raising awareness among young gamers to fight stigma.
World MS Day 2019
For World MS Day 2019, we supported MSIF`s campaign #MyInvisibleMS. To raise awareness on World MS Day and shine a light on the invisible symptoms of multiple sclerosis, real people with MS attended a creative workshop hosted by us to visualize the unseen burdens they live with day in, day out. These art pieces have been put together to form the My Invisible MS Art Gallery, which was used to raise awareness in 15 countries on World MS Day 2019 and beyond.
Below you can see images from the My Invisible MS art gallery.
I’ve drawn two pictures to show the variability – when I first had MS I got the symptom of pain. I had such an intense level of pain that I thought it was the most amount of pain that someone could ever have. Then MS said “hold my beer” and increased the level of pain to such an intensity that it was completely off the charts. It’s something I never thought was possible. That opened my mind to how different it is to the normal experience of pain. (Stuart is a paid consultant of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany)
I feel like I’m dizzy sometimes, and that’s something you cannot see. And sometimes you have to grab onto things to regain balance. Also, sometimes I feel like I have brain fog. My first symptom of having MS was Optic Neuritis– where I had blurry vision. I couldn’t see straight, so I drew my eye out of my body. These are my invisible symptoms because I look just like a normal person. (Stanca is a paid consultant of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany)
This portrays how I feel when I have a relapse – I’m in a dark place with the symptoms that I’ve had so far… The tingling and sensibility disorder, with vision problems, double vision and also dizziness. When I’m good and I don’t have a relapse, I don’t even think about my MS. (Edward is a paid consultant of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany)
MS is an abstract illness, it’s difficult to understand how we feel. I look like I’m perfect but in fact I have fatigue, I have no sensation in my hands, fingers or the left part of my body, but nobody sees it. I need to do more than you to do the same thing because of MS. I have to be like 3 people to win MS - that’s part of my life. (David is a paid consultant of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany)
This image represents the everyday nuances of having MS. The aura of numbness and clumsiness follows you everywhere and only a few can see it. Speechless and literally out of focus everything is harder, everything is easier to avoid. MS is an iron ball, invisible but efficient on locking you to your home, your loved ones, your safe zone. (Marco is a paid consultant of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany)
My MS art shows skin sensitivity, that’s a lot of heat on the skin and also heat from the pain within. I feel like a normal person who is falling apart under the heat of this illness. (Carolyn is a paid consultant of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany)
My wife has MS, I do not – I am her carer. My art shows her symptoms: she suffers from pain, she suffers from numbness, sometimes her vision, she definitely suffers from fatigue. But she doesn’t let that define her – she is undefined. She is an amazing person, she has strength and she certainly is not someone who will let MS own and operate her. (Martyn is a paid consultant of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany)
My major detail is pain. I’ve got a little pain, much more pain and the strongest pain. That’s the main thing for me that is invisible. (Chris is a paid consultant of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany)
- US-NONNI-01496 April 2023