Empathy Kits

UVa students interacted with basic molecular biology researchers, nonprofits, health care providers, patients, and caregivers in order to develop five-minute "Empathy Kit" videos demonstrating what it's like to live with three common neurodegenerative diseases: Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Huntington's Disease. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The goal of these empathy kits is to expand the experience of unaffected people in order to foster empathy and understanding through perspective-taking. There's no better way to understand the impact of something than to experience it yourself! 

 

It is extremely important to make connections between people who do basic research on a disorder, the people who are caring for the patients, and the patients themselves. It's rewarding for the scientists and enlightening for the affected families. Projects like this also work to promote brain understanding, raise awareness of the type of research that is going on here at UVa, foster collaboration between UVa's nearly 300 neuroscientists, and strengthen the bonds between UVa and our community.

 

Our group is available for in-person or zoom presentations featuring these videos to patient advocacy groups to foster brain awareness in retirement homes and other community organizations where neurological disorders are more common. A showing of these videos helps to start needed conversations about what it is like to experience these disorders in ourselves, our families, and our communities. Let us know if you are interested in having us come and present on AD, PD or HD to volunteers, retirement community residents, or caregivers.