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Newsletter - June 2022
Greetings Neuro Challenge Community,

June marks the one-year anniversary since I started my career at Neuro Challenge Foundation for Parkinson’s. It has been an exhilarating year filled with much joy, but also some sadness. The joy comes from seeing the hope we instill in people dealing with their diagnosis, and the improved quality of life people have when they participate in ongoing support and therapeutic programs. The sadness comes from the losses we’ve endured this year due to the death of members of the Parkinson’s community. 

I’ve spent the last year getting to know the Parkinson’s community through a variety of different events. I have attended Movers and Shakers, Off-Key Chorale and Joyful Movement through Parkinson’s with the Sarasota Ballet, along with many other events. I am in awe at the tenacity of the people who attend these programs. It is proven that exercise is the best way to keep the symptoms of Parkinson’s from worsening, and yet I recognize how difficult it is to get moving some days. So, when someone shows up for a program who is having a rough day, they are to be commended. But what is most rewarding is seeing the person who started with a rough day reap the benefits of a program. This happened recently with our Urban Poling class, some people who were having challenges with movement started walking using the poles and found themselves moving much better afterwards. 

During the year I have enjoyed watching our mission and vision come to life. Our mission is to improve the quality of life of people with Parkinson’s and their caregivers today. And our vision is that all people with Parkinson’s and their caregivers are empowered members of an inclusive, caring, and supportive community. I have made many positive memories this year and look forward to making many more in the coming years. If you have ideas for programs or services, or general input for us, please don’t hesitate to contact me at or 941-926-6413.

Yours in the journey, 
Sara Grivetti, PhD, CRC
Chief Executive Officer
Join a Program Here!
Click here to watch the Season Finale of Greater Sarasota Series on WEDU featuring Joyful Movement through Parkinson's with the Sarasota Ballet.
Neuro Challenge is grateful to continue to serve the Parkinson’s community by providing a caring and supportive space to assist along the Parkinson’s journey. 
Visit the Program Calendar to stay up to date with ALL of the programs being offered. 
Click Here to view the Program Calendar!
NEW PROGRAM - Fitness Walking Group
Thursday, June 9th, 2022 

Inside The Mall at University Town Center, 140 University Town Center Dr, Sarasota, FL 34243

Join us for a fun Fitness Walk…using urban poles.

Meet Care Advisor Ellen at the UTC entrance, North of the east Dillard's entrance, with your water and your poles!  Park on the east side of UTC in areas 5B &5C.
Urban poling (also known as Nordic walking)—think cross-country skiing without the skis—has toning, calorie-burning and posture benefits that have made it popular in Europe for decades and a new workout favorite in Canada. And Neuro Challenge Foundation is bringing it to Sarasota, FL.
Come learn how adding specialized walking poles can improve balance, posture and walking ability.  Walking poles increase confidence and the enjoyment of walking while being an effective fall prevention strategy.   

Ellen Schaller, one of the NCF Care Advisors, will have poles for the group to try and educate everyone on the Urban Poling technique for fitness walking. Volunteers will be on hand to assist and enjoy the walk too. We will start with a few warmup exercises and then have plenty of time to do some fitness walking using the urban poles. 
For more information contact Ellen Schaller at
In- Person Parkinson's Wellness Series in partnership with Advent Health Sebring
Thursday, June 2nd | 1:30pm-2:30pm
Location: AdventHealth CREATION Life Center 4005 Sun ‘N Lake Blvd Sebring, FL
Topic: "Identity Theft Protection"
Presented by Patricia Henderson, MA  Outreach and Community Services Manager with Senior Connections Center-Tampa, FL

While anyone can end up the victim of fraud, senior citizens are particularly at risk. Older Americans in the U.S. lose $3 billion a year in financial scams, according to the U.S. Senate's Special Committee on Aging. Join Patricia Henderson from the Senior Connection Center in Tampa, Florida to learn how to spot a possible identity theft scam and how to protect yourself from harm.

Patricia Henderson has been with Senior Connection Center since January 2009. She is the Outreach and Community Services Manager and the Elder Abuse Prevention Initiative Coordinator. Patricia has an MA in Gerontology from the University of South Florida.

This program is supported by a community grant from the Parkinson’s Foundation.
VIRTUAL ONLY Classes for June!
2nd and 4th Tuesdays, 11:00am-12:00pm (ET)
1st and 3rd Wednesdays 1:00pm- 2:00pm (ET)
Mindful Moves Dancing Through Parkinson's with Cynthia Alicea

For Zoom Meeting registration link visit our Programs Calendar.

Mindful Moves Dancing Through Parkinson's with Cynthia is an hour dance class based on the Dance for PD three segment structure. Curriculum will utilize Brain-Compatible Dance Lessons. We hope you will virtually join us this month! 

In-Person Movers and Shakers Education & Support Program
June 20th, 2022 | 3:00pm-4:00pm
Location: Jacaranda Public Library, 4143 Woodmere Park Blvd, Venice, FL 34293
Topic: "Moving through Anxiety and Balance with Tai Chi - A Practice for People with PD and Care Partners."

Presented by: Carisa Campanella, BA, Speech Communications
AS, Sports Medicine and Fitness Technology

Carisa will explain the benefits of practicing Tai Chi to improve balance as well as alleviate anxiety. She will discuss how to utilize Tai Chi movements and breathing techniques to alleviate anxiety during stressful moments.Tai Chi can be done seated or standing. Half the presentation will be informational, and half will be a basic Tai Chi class for all levels

Carisa b
egan her career as a Mental Health Worker in NJ, where she worked as a counselor for mentally ill adults. She then spent 16 years in Pharmaceutical Sales promoting psychotropic and neurological agents for Pfizer and Allergan. Her commitment to helping individuals improve their quality of life led her to Neuro Challenge Foundation for Parkinson’s in Sarasota, FL, where she began as a volunteer and was ultimately promoted to Program Director. While working at Neuro Challenge Foundation, Carisa went back to school and earned an associate degree in Sports Medicine and Fitness Technology. She then worked part-time at the HealthFit Fitness Center in Sarasota, FL, where she was a Group Fitness Instructor and Exercise Specialist. In her current role as the Fitness Director at Grand Living, Carisa’s mission is to help people achieve their health goals in a fun and engaging environment!

This group is based out of Venice, FL and led by members of the Parkinson’s community, this program is designed to provide both educational content to support you on your journey, as well as allow for a monthly combined support group for care partners and those living with Parkinson’s disease.
For more information visit our Programs Calendar.
Virtual Adult Children of People with Parkinson's Discussion Group
Thursday June 9th | 8:00pm-9:00pm (ET)

This program is for Adult children of People with Parkinson's. At this program participants will provide and receive guidance and advice, in a safe, supportive environment; while sharing ideas and discussing the challenges associated with being an adult child of a person with Parkinson’s Disease.

PWPs and Care Partners make sure to share this information with anyone you know that would benefit from this program!

For Zoom Meeting registration link visit our Programs Calendar.
In Person Parkinson's Wellness Club in partnership with Sarasota Memorial Health Care System

An educational program featuring Wanda Jackson, CHAM, care coordinator of SMH, and Ellen Schaller, Care Advisor, Neuro Challenge Foundation. This program is open to all people with Parkinson's and their care partners.

June 15th | 10:00am-11:00am
Location: Sarasota Memorial Hospital – Venice, 2600 Laurel Rd E, North Venice, FL 34275
Meet in the Garden Café Conference Room #2  

June 22nd | 10:00am-11:00am
Location: SMH Care Center at Clark Road, 5880 Rand Blvd, Sarasota, FL

Topic:  "Parkinson’s Wellness Recovery (PWR)"             
Presented by: Cassandra Santiago OTR HealthFit

Medicare has approved a new therapy for Parkinson’s!
PWR!Moves is a PD-specific skill training program to maintain or restore skills that deteriorate and interfere with everyday movements.
The BASIC4 | PWR!Moves are performed with large amplitude, high effort, and attention to action in multiple postures (floor, all 4's, sitting, and standing)

For more information contact Ellen Schaller at
Friday, June 17th | 10:30am- 1:00pm
In-Person Mind and Motion Parkinson's Combined Education & Support Group 
Topic:  "Sleep Issues for People with PD and their Care partners"

Master the Possibilities- Adult Ed. Center,
8415 SW 80th St, Ocala, FL

If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease or a related movement disorder, this interest group gathers each month to share insights, issues and resources.

An opening educational program is followed by a unique Parkinson's exercise routine and two support circles- one for patients and another for caregivers- where relationships are forged around shared experiences, compassion and wisdom.

30 minute break 11:30am-12:00pm 

For any questions or to help with registration call Master the Possibilities at (352) 861-9751 to register Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.  .
*4th Mondays Only in the months of June, July, & August*
In-Person Parkinson’s Education and Support Group In partnership with Suncoast Parkinson’s Support Group

Location: St Luke's Methodist Church, 4444 5th Ave N. St Pete. St. Petersburg, FL 33713.

June 27th | 1:00pm-2:00pm 
This in-person educational program is in partnership with Suncoast Parkinson's Support Group. This group meets the 4th Monday monthly and is facilitated by Dr. Carol Pappas. This group is designed for people with Parkinson’s and their Care Partners to come together for connection and support on their Parkinson’s journey!
For more information visit our Programs Calendar.
These are just a few of the many programs offered each month! For more information on ALL in-person and virtual programs offered visit the Program Calendar here!
All Neuro Challenge Foundation for Parkinson's programs and services are provided to the Parkinson's community at no charge. Please consider making a donation today!

Your gift can still be matched through the Flanzer Contribution Matching Program. Neuro Challenge Foundation for Parkinson's is one of many organizations participating in this program. To ensure your gift is designated to our organization, select "Neuro Challenge Foundation for Parkinson's" from the dropdown menu on the donation form.
Click Here to Donate!
The Neuro Challenge Care Advisors are here for YOU!
Neuro Challenge Care Advisors have helped thousands of people with Parkinson’s, their Care Partners and families on the journey with Parkinson's.

Join a Neuro Challenge Support Group in your county to meet your Care Advisor and find out how
they can help you too! 
Call Neuro Challenge at 941-926-6413 to schedule an appointment with a Care Advisor or send us an email at
All Neuro Challenge programs and services are provided at no charge.

Para obtener más información en español, comuníquese con Yazmil Soriano en o
941-926-6413 ext. 200

Todos los programas y servicios de Neuro Challenge son gratuitos.

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Staying Connected! 

Now more then ever it is important we stay connected. By commenting, liking, and sharing our content on social media, you can help spread information about the therapeutic, educational and support programs and Care Advising services Neuro Challenge offers to the Parkinson's community at no charge. Click on the social media icons to get connected today! Simply by forwarding this email to your family and friends in the PD community, you will help spread the word of the great services Neuro Challenge provides to people with Parkinson's and their care partners. 

Host a fundraiser to benefit Neuro Challenge!

You can celebrate by hosting a fundraiser to honor those you love, and help support Neuro Challenge and the local Parkinson's Community. 100% of all donations go directly to Neuro Challenge - Facebook does not keep one penny.
It is FUN, FREE and EASY!  
To create a Facebook fundraiser for a Neuro Challenge, click here or follow these steps:
       Go to your Facebook Account
  1. Click  Fundraisers in the left menu of your News Feed.
  2. Click Raise Money.
  3. Select Nonprofit or Charity.
  4. Select a charitable organization, choose a cover photo and fill in the fundraiser details.
  5. Click Create.
  6. Then INVITE your friends!
That's it!  You are fundraising!  And Celebrating!  

You Shop Amazon Gives

Want to help make a difference while you shop on Amazon?

Simply follow the instructions below to select "Neuro Challenge Foundation Inc" as your charity and activate AmazonSmile in the app or go to on your computer to shop. They'll donate a portion of your eligible purchases to us!

How it works on the Amazon App:
1. Open the Amazon app on your phone
2. Select the main menu (=) & tap on "AmazonSmile" within Programs & Features
3. Select "Neuro Challenge Foundation Inc" as your charity
4. Follow the on-screen instructions to activate AmazonSmile in the mobile app

How it works on your computer:
1. Click on this link to shop online:
2. Click Start Shopping to sign in
3. Make your purchases and AmazonSmile will donate

Make sure that Neuro Challenge Foundation Inc. is selected as your charitable organization of choice when you checkout!
Amazon donates 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to the charitable organization of your choice.
View the Program Calendar Here
How to participate in our Virtual Programs and Webinars:
  • click on the link to our  Program Calendar  
  • find the program you wish to join
  • click on the program for more details- click on the link to register\join the program 
  • or click on the Online Event Location to register\join for the program

We ask you to sign in a few minutes early so you can be placed into the “waiting room” and know you are connected before we let everyone into the meeting at the scheduled time.

The sponsored webinars are live events only, recording and screenshots are prohibited.

Copyright © 2022 Neuro Challenge Foundation,  All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
Neuro Challenge Foundation for Parkinson's
722 Apex Road, Unit A, Sarasota FL  34240
Phone:  941-926-6413 I

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