Voluntary Sector: Epilepsy charity rebrands

Youth epilepsy charity appoints comms chief as part of wider shake-up.

The UK's main youth epilepsy charity has appointed a head of comms as it embarks on an ambitious PR offensive.

The charity launched its new brand Young Epilepsy on Tuesday, having brought in Kristy MacLeod as head of comms. It was previously called National Centre for Young People with Epilepsy.

MacLeod joins from Breakthrough Breast Cancer, where she was media relations manager. She said she wanted to make epilepsy an issue with the profile of Alzheimer's and breast cancer, which have gained huge media sympathy in recent years.

'Epilepsy doesn't have the media profile that it warrants. PR can make a difference - I really believe that epilepsy should have a stronger media profile. I want to take Young Epilepsy out there as a dominant media voice.'

MacLeod added that the comms team would focus on digital to drive new and existing support.

MacLeod has worked as a senior media relations officer at RNIB, and a PR manager at Tommy's, The Baby Charity. She replaces Ann Marie Evans, who has been the charity's interim head of comms since March.

Evans said the change of brand name reflected the organisation's move to become a national charity, following improvements to its services.

The new brand is being launched with research revealing that only 40 per cent of parents of children with epilepsy are aware of staff at their school receiving specialist epilepsy training.

Young Epilepsy is the only UK-wide charity exclusively supporting the 112,000 children and young people under 25 with epilepsy and their families.

It offers education and health services to those most severely affected by epilepsy and related conditions.

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