We’re partnering with Next to get Parkinson’s understood

Genna, 39, has Parkinson’s. She’s designed an exclusive range of T-shirts and bags for Next. 

This new partnership will help more people understand Parkinson’s and raise vital funds to support others with the condition.

Ahead of World Parkinson’s Day on 11 April 2021, we’re teaming up with British clothing retailer Next in a new partnership to raise funds and awareness about the condition.

A new range of exclusive T-shirts and tote bags go on sale today, with 100% of profits going to Parkinson’s UK. 

With slogans like “If nothing else be yourself” and “You are someone’s reason to smile”, the products promote messages of diversity and inclusion.

They have been designed by Genna, 39, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2016 while on maternity leave from her job as a designer at Next. 

Make someone smile

World Parkinson’s Day 2021 is all about community. Being together, even when we’re apart.

Why not reach out and show someone that you care? 

Send them one of Genna's specially-designed T-shirts or bags, and raise vital funds at the same time.

Living with young onset Parkinson’s

When Genna was diagnosed, she was struck by how much of the information available was aimed at older people.

There are 145,000 people with Parkinson’s in the UK. Our 2019 survey to tackle public misconceptions found that 24% of people had been told they were “too young” to have Parkinson’s. 

87% of people with Parkinson’s have faced discrimination and harassment, and this figure rises to 99% amongst those aged 40 to 50.

The money raised from this range of products will help support other younger people with Parkinson’s and transform our services for newly diagnosed people. 

It will directly fund our innovative programme to bring the right support and information to people with Parkinson’s, at the right time and in the right way for them.

Promoting more inclusive workplaces 

Genna first decided to propose the idea of designing a range to raise awareness of Parkinson’s after she was a panellist on a Parkinson’s UK webinar about diversity and inclusion in the workplace. 

She says:

“I am so grateful to Next who have taken my idea and run with it. They’ve always supported me throughout my journey and I am really lucky to have them as an employer. As an individual living with Parkinson’s, I wanted to get some feel good messages out there for the Parkinson’s community though this clothing range. 

“Most importantly, I really want people to understand that you can get Parkinson’s at any age. I would love to see the range sell out and raise much needed money for younger people living with Parkinson’s so they can get the right support and are never left out.”

Next. Together with Parkinson’s UK

Our new partnership with Next stems from a shared ambition to tackle misconceptions about Parkinson’s, and to support people like Genna to use their talents and experience to transform lives.

As a major retailer and employer, Next aims to raise awareness of Parkinson’s as a “hidden disability” as part of its work to promote diversity and disability inclusion. 

Alongside this new product range, Next is also making a corporate donation, providing awareness training for employees, and encouraging them to make individual donations and learn more about Parkinson’s. 

Thanks to Next, we can promote greater awareness and together raise vital funds to support more people with the condition.

Main image photographed by Paul Meyler