Tim Howard Kicks-off Year Long Awareness and Fundraising Campaign at Team Up with Tim Howard

Hundreds of fans joined the NJ Center for Tourette Syndrome (NJCTS) and Rutgers Men’s Soccer in welcoming home world renowned goalkeeper and New Jersey native Tim Howard at the Team Up with Tim Howard event on June 4 at Rutgers University.

Tim Howard signs copies of his book, The Keeper, at Team Up with Tim Howard on June 4

Tim Howard signs copies of his book, The Keeper, at Team Up with Tim Howard on June 4

For many Team Up with Tim Howard was a chance to meet a world famous athlete. For others it was a chance to meet a hero, a Tourette Syndrome champion—proof that an individual with Tourette Syndrome can be and do anything. To others like Ethan Lederman, 14 years old from Howell, NJ, “It was the best day of my life.”

Tourette Syndrome (TS) is a neurological disorder characterized by involuntary sounds and movements known as tics. It is estimated that 1 in 100 children show symptoms of the disorder with more than 20,000 school-aged kids in New Jersey alone.

Team Up with Tim Howard  kicked-off a year-long awareness campaign benefiting the NJCTS Youth Development programs, including the NJCTS Tim Howard Leadership Academy. The Academy is a four-day intensive program in August for teenagers diagnosed with TS focusing on empowerment, self-leadership, advocacy skills and resilience.

NJCTS Youth Advocate Tess Kowalski opened the afternoon by singing the national anthem. State Senators Christopher “Kip” Bateman, James Beach, and Bob Smith represented the more than 26 towns across the state recognizing June 4th as Tourette Syndrome Awareness Day. Senator Bateman presented Esther Howard, Tim Howard’s mother, with Governor Chris Christie’s proclamation recognizing May 15 through June 15 as Tourette Syndrome Awareness Month. North Brunswick Township Councilman Ralph Andrews, on behalf of Mayor Francis “Mac” Womack, welcomed home North Brunswick native Tim Howard.

The fun-filled afternoon continued with Coach Dan Donigan and Rutgers Men’s Soccer leading a clinic for kids while DJ Yoshi and the Rutgers University Dance Team entertained the crowd. Danny Breslauer returned to Piscataway to serve as emcee for the day. Breslauer was a long-time play-by-play analyst for Rutgers sports including football, soccer, and women’s basketball. He led the audience and 320 soccer clinic participants in giving Tim Howard a welcome he’ll not soon forget.

More than 300 kids participated in a soccer clinic with Rutgers Men's Soccer at Team Up with Tim Howard on June 4

More than 300 kids participated in a soccer clinic with Rutgers Men’s Soccer at Team Up with Tim Howard on June 4

Tim Howard met and posed for photos with fans of all ages and signed hundreds of copies of his book, The Keeper: A Life of Saving Goals and Achieving Them before joining Danny Breslauer on the field. An integral partner of NJCTS since its founding, Howard spoke to Breslauer about soccer, his experience playing in the world cup, and living with Tourette Syndrome.

Howard was diagnosed with TS as a child and has since brought TS to the world stage, sharing his inspirational message of resilience in the face of Tourette Syndrome. “Being great is within our reach,” said Howard. “The time has come that we stop making excuses. It’s time to live and thrive with Tourette Syndrome. I knew I had TS and I knew it affected my everyday life, but I never thought for a second it would stop me. Anything is possible.”

NJCTS Executive Director Faith Rice recalled the moment she first met the budding soccer star. “We were just getting off the ground then,” Rice said. “He came to us about 13 years ago when he wanted to go public with the fact that he had Tourette Syndrome. He came in on the ground floor literally. He came and volunteered. He collated and organized papers. He signed posters to our original group of kids. It was just a handful then when we started out. And that handful has grown to a statewide and regional reach and some programs have a worldwide reach.”

Tim Howard has been very public about Tourette Syndrome but at Team Up with Tim Howard he upped his game, introducing an important new initiative called The GreaTS. “I am teaming with NJCTS to bring this platform to light and open the conversation about TS,” said Howard. “Together we are building awareness for TS and, most importantly, directly helping youth find their path to personal greatness. This is a movement that asks people to stand with The GreaTS to overcome some of the challenges of TS. I have had some wonderful and proud moments in my career. Launching The GreaTS is one of them.”

The GreaTS

The GreaTS

For more information about NJCTS, the NJCTS Tim Howard Leadership Academy, and The GreaTS, please visit www.njcts.org or call 908-575-7350. To invest in the endowment for the Leadership Academy, visit www.gofundme.com/TimHowardTSFund.

Team Up with Tim Howard was sponsored in part by

Verizon NJShares, RUCDR Infinite Biologics, The Warner Rice Family Fund, Asurion, The Zoffinger Family Fund, Atlantic Health, South Jersey Industries, PennEast Pipeline, The Spar Family, The Tischfield Family, The Omaggio Family, The Sherbondy Family, Fresh & Co., PixiCast, JAG Physical Therapy, Connor Strong, New Jersey Manufacturers Insurance, Somerset Development, Dr. Robert King, AMA Consulting, The Judy Taub Gold Foundation, Oxford Realty, The Mueller Family, Sterling Management Services, Philip and Tammy Murphy Family Foundation, and Flemington Car & Truck Company

Celebrities with Tourette Syndrome: Stories

If you or anyone of your loved ones were diagnosed with Tourette Syndrome, it doesn’t mean that either you or your family members can’t lead a normal life. Tourette disorder is not a death sentence neither it is disability, in fact, you can live a long and happy life and even leave a footprint in the history as a successful person.

In proof of this statement, below is the list of people who managed to become highly-successful while diagnosed with Tourette.

  • David Beckham. David Robert Joseph Beckham, a world famous English footballer (soccer player) admitted to have OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) and Tourette Syndrome early in his career. He wants and needs everything to be perfect. Before Mr. Beckham can relax, he has to put everything in a straight line or in pairs. While diagnosed with OCD and Tourette David Beckham managed to win league titles in four countries and play for outstanding clubs like Real Madrid, Milan and Manchester United. Overall, during his career he played 741 games and scored 129 goals. He is also known as a fashion icon and a wonderful husband and father of 4 children.
  • Mahmud Abdul-Rauf.  Abdul-Rauf is a former basketball player known throughout the world for his most accurate free-throw shooting records. Mahmud has been suffering from Tourette Syndrome since he was a kid. His body tics are quite noticeable even during a game. While a lot of people discussed and even bullied him at first, Mahmud talked openly about him having Tourette and even emphasized that Tourette made him seek perfection in everything and achieve the great results he has. Mahmud Abdul-Rauf had a successful 9 years career and is still recognized as one of the greatest basketball players.
  • Howie Mandell. Howie Mandell is a famous comedian, brains behind several TV shows and a recognizable host of “America’s got talent”. His condition is similar to David Beckham, Howie is seeking perfection in everything. He even has two houses, one of which is aseptic, as he is also suffering from germophobia, which turns into severe tics. One of the 100 best comedians of all time, Howie has been very open about his condition and is sure that it hasn’t hold him back in his career and success.
  • Howard Hughes. A billionaire, innovator and an outstanding aviator, Howard Hughes, was also suffering from Tourette syndrome. His “eccentricities” as well as germ-obsession didn’t stop him from being one of the richest and most successful people on Earth. He is remembered as an unusual director and producer of Hollywood movies as well.
  • Dan Ackroyd. Famous Canadian actor was diagnosed with Tourette syndrome and Aspergers at a very young age. When he was a kid, he suffered from body and vocal tics and he could often hear voices. Fortunately, most of his symptoms were subsided by the successful therapy treatment when he was 14. Dan Ackroyd built a great career on television: he was a cast member of Saturday Live Show and he also starred in several movies like “My Girl”, “Ghostbusters”, “The Blue Brothers” etc.

P. Green is an author of “Celebrities with Tourette Syndrome: Stories”. Right now she works as contributor for the Android app for parents at Pumpic.

UPCOMING WEBINAR: February 25 on Sensory Issues at Home & at School

THIS WEEK’S WEBINAR

Making Sense of Sensory Issues – How to manage heightened senses at home and in the classroom

February 25, 2015

Presented by Dr. Michelle Miller, Psy.D., a New York State-licensed clinical psychologist who works at Therapy West, a group practice in Manhattan, and as post-doctoral fellow in the Tourette’s Syndrome Clinic at Rutgers University in Piscataway, N.J.

Over the years, parents and teachers have been increasingly attending to childrens’ sensory-related struggles; however, understanding and supporting sensory problems still remains unclear for so many people who work with children. Research also has suggested that 1 in 6 children are significantly impacted by sensory issues, further highlighting the need for this area to be addressed. This webinar is aimed at exploring what sensory issues are, how they look in different children and adults, and what can be done — both at home and at school — to help children with sensory issues thrive.

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“He just can’t control it”

My son, almost 11, was diagnosed with TS about 2 years ago. Looking back, it had been going on for about 2 years prior to his diagnosis with symptoms of sniffing, throat clearing, etc.

Everything became clear during a travel baseball game when he was on the mound to pitch. He could not control his head and neck, except during the actual pitch. High anxiety situations and fatigue provoke his tics.

Currently, the tics are controlled with a low dose anxiety medication. BUT the behavioral characteristics of a pre-adolescent, pre-puberty, pre-teen is our main concern at this time. It is exhausting to manage! Struggling with dysinhibition, oppositional defiance, rage, etc.

What is breaking my heart at this time is the fact that he is a really good kid, (straight A student in high-ability classes and manages his time with sports) and how hard he is working and fighting to keep it all together all day — only to release his wrath when he gets home on his little brother and sister and parents!

I can tell that he knows what is going on, but just can’t control it.

UPCOMING WEBINAR: January 21 on Habit Reversal Therapy

THIS WEEK’S WEBINAR

Creative Applications of Exposure Therapy and Habit Reversal Therapy

January 21, 2015

Presented by Dr. Joelle Beecher-McGovern, a clinical psychotherapist at the Child & Adolescent OCD, Tic, Trich & Anxiety Group (COTTAGe) in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy has strong experiential support for a number of psychiatric disorders among children and adolescents. It includes several treatment modalities, including exposure therapy for pediatric anxiety and habit reversal training for tic disorders and trichotillomania. Despite the strong evidence for these treatments, they can be difficult for children and families to implement for a number of reasons, including logistical barriers, motivation issues and difficulties with follow-through in out-of-session work.

In this presentation, Dr. Hilary Dingfelder will briefly describe these treatment modalities and discuss some of the practical issues associated with implementing these treatments with children and adolescents. Dr. Dingfelder will then discuss some creative applications of these strategies to enhance these treatments for children and adolescents. Examples of areas that will be covered include:

  1. How technology can be used to supplement treatment (e.g., using the smart phone to monitor progress or supplement exposures)
  2. How to strengthen reward plans to improvement motivation
  3. Creative ways to enhance exposures with young children (e.g., through the use of games and puppets).

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UPCOMING WEBINAR: November 12 on getting kids motivated for school

THIS WEEK’S WEBINAR

Getting Kids Motivated for School: Strategies to foster your child/teen’s motivation to achieve in school

November 12, 2014

Presented by Dr. Graham Hartke, is a licensed psychologist in private practice in Roseland, N.J.

As our schools continue to increase curriculum, testing, and workload standards, many kids and teens are struggling to stay motivated in school. These are students who do not like school, struggle to complete homework, procrastinate often, have slipping grades, are bored, say they “don’t care about school”, avoid school work, get in trouble, are disorganized, and/or feel disconnected from classroom learning.

This webinar focuses on strategies parents and educators can use to increase student motivation to succeed in school. Strategies will address the causes of low motivation, learning difficulties, improving the homework process, improving organization, and reducing procrastination.

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OTHER UPCOMING WEBINARS

 

Bullying & Vulnerable Populations

November 19, 2014

Presented by Nadia Ansary, Ph.D.

More information about this webinar »

Monsters, Robbers & Nightmares, Oh My! Simple Ways to Improve Your Child’s Sleep

December 3, 2014

Presented by Courtney Weiner, Ph.D.

More information about this webinar »

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List of all NJCTS webinars, including October 29 on mental health in the African-American community

THIS WEEK’S WEBINAR

Mental Health Stigma in the African-American Community

October 29, 2014

Presented by Dr. Christine Adkins-Hutchison, Associate Director of the Office of Counseling and Disability Services at Kean University in Union, N.J.

Asking for help of any kind can be difficult. Seeking psychological services can be even more challenging. For many in the African American community, acknowledging the need for help and pursuing assistance in many forms, especially in the form of counseling, can feel next to impossible.

This webinar will discuss the stigma regarding help-seeking and mental health issues that persists in this ethnic community. How to recognize the need for support, and ways to encourage help-seeking in this population also will be considered.

REGISTER FOR THIS WEBINAR »

OTHER UPCOMING WEBINARS

Getting Kids Motivated for School

November 12, 2014

Presented by Graham Hartke, Psy.D.

More information about this webinar »

Bullying & Vulnerable Populations

November 19, 2014

Presented by Nadia Ansary, Ph.D.

More information about this webinar »

Monsters, Robbers & Nightmares, Oh My! Simple Ways to Improve Your Child’s Sleep

December 3, 2014

Presented by Courtney Weiner, Ph.D.

More information about this webinar »

Continue reading

List of all NJCTS webinars, including October 8 on Tourette in the Asian community

THIS WEEK’S WEBINAR

Mental Health Issues in Today’s Asian-American Community

October 8, 2014

Presented by Dr. Andrew J. Lee

Dr. Lee designed this webinar to provide participants information about the stigma surrounding mental health issues in Asian and Asian-American communities, some cultural factors contributing to this stigma and some suggestions as to how to talk with Asians about mental health issues.

Dr. Lee will cover Asian cultural values that may contribute to the stigma associated with seeking out mental health services, the model minority myth and the negative implications of this myth, the role of ethnic identity and acculturation, and what can be helpful to know in speaking with this ethnic population about mental health issues.

Dr. Andrew J. Lee is the Director of the Office of Counseling and Disability Services, which includes both the Kean Counseling Center and the Kean Office of Disability Services, at Kean University.

REGISTER FOR THIS WEBINAR »

OTHER UPCOMING WEBINARS

Bullying & Vulnerable Populations

November 19, 2014

Presented by Nadia Ansary, Ph.D.

More information about this webinar »

Monsters, Robbers & Nightmares, Oh My! Simple Ways to Improve Your Child’s Sleep

December 3, 2014

Presented by Courtney Weiner, Ph.D.

More information about this webinar »

Continue reading

List of all NJCTS webinars, including October 1 on trade secrets of a Tourette doc

THIS WEEK’S WEBINAR

Trade Secrets of a Tourette Syndrome Doctor

October 1, 2014

Presented by Tolga Taneli, MD

Would you like to learn some great tips on speaking with your child’s doctors?  How about getting them all to collaborate with each other about your child?  Did you ever wonder about the drug approval process?  Learn about this and more in this webinar!

REGISTER FOR THIS WEBINAR »

OTHER UPCOMING WEBINARS

Mental Health Issues? Asians have those? Understanding the stigma surrounding mental health for Asian and Asian Americans

October 8, 2014

Presented by Dr. Andrew J. Lee

More information about this webinar »

Bullying & Vulnerable Populations

November 19, 2014

Presented by Nadia Ansary, Ph.D.

More information about this webinar »

Monsters, Robbers & Nightmares, Oh My! Simple Ways to Improve Your Child’s Sleep

December 3, 2014

Presented by Courtney Weiner, Ph.D.

More information about this webinar »

Continue reading

List of all NJCTS webinars, including September 17 on getting kids motivated for school

THIS WEEK’S WEBINAR

Getting Kids Motivated for School

September 17, 2014

Presented by Graham Hartke, Psy.D.

As our schools continue to increase curriculum, testing, and workload standards, many kids and teens are struggling to stay motivated in school. These are students who do not like school, struggle to complete homework, procrastinate often, have slipping grades, are bored, say they “don’t care about school,” avoid school work, get in trouble, are disorganized and/or feel disconnected from classroom learning.

This webinar will focus on strategies parents and educators can use to increase student motivation to succeed in school. Strategies will address the causes of low motivation, learning difficulties, improving the homework process, improving organization, and reducing procrastination.

REGISTER FOR THIS WEBINAR »

Continue reading