On the run-up to the MS Sessions event in Prague, Czech Republic in November,  Jacobo Santamarta Barral shares what being part of the EMSP Young People’s Network means to him and why he’s looking forward to taking part in the event. 

MS Sessions A festival for young people with MS

Being part of something as important as the EMSP young people`s group is one of the best initiatives I have been involved in. This November in Prague, I’m looking forward to having another opportunity to meet other young people at the MS Sessions event organised by EMSP and Shift.MS.

It all started when I was awarded a grant to attend the Spring Conference that took place in Warsaw in 2015. There, I had the opportunity to meet other people who, like myself, were experiencing the very same symptoms as I was, as well as experts on the field of MS, people who either had a better knowledge of the disease, symptoms and treatments or had different experiences worth sharing with others.

Having the chance to meet other people in a position similar to mine was both relaxing and inspiring. It was relaxing knowing how other people in my situation was dealing with the disease and coping with its very different symptoms. And you could say it was inspiring knowing that these very same people were still able and willing to find answers to the issues they were facing. That involved having group meetings and workshops in which different stories were shared and we gave ideas about how life for young people with MS could be improved.

In 2016 I attended again the young people’s conference, this time in Oslo, Norway. On one side I ran for the position of Young People Representative to try and get the best for us. On the other side I also attended the conference for young people in which we were giving ideas to improve our situation as well as listening to very inspiring stories both in this conference and in the Main Conference. Thanks to all these experiences I learned many new things and learned how to implement them in my city, region and country. I now also participate and collaborate in European projects by being part of the EMSP Young People’s Network, in which I helped by writing articles and translating the first and following newsletters.

Attending these conferences as well as other meetings with people living with chronic diseases, gives you the opportunity to learn many things about how to handle life when you have to deal with this kind of situations. MS Sessions is a perfect opportunity to show your skills and power with people who ‘get’ you, be inspired by one another and learn from MS experts. Send your application to emma.rogan@emsp.org and be part of something brilliant.

Leave a Reply