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Teenager uses epilepsy diagnosis to help others battling the condition

Bella Bauer, Miss Southern Heartland’s Teen, is on a mission to empower other children and teens who have been diagnosed with epilepsy.

Bauer was diagnosed with the condition in fifth grade, and ever since, she has been pushing limits and advocating for greater awareness and education about epilepsy.

Despite being initially told she couldn’t do physical activities she loved, Bauer refused to let epilepsy define her. She has since spoken to hundreds of students in local school districts and colleges, sharing her story and advocating for a greater understanding of epilepsy. She also wrote a book to donate to neurology and pediatric offices throughout Indiana, and she plans to continue distributing it to help children overcome their fear of an epilepsy diagnosis.

Her advocacy efforts don’t stop there. She has met with Indiana State Senator Mike Braun’s regional director and Rudy Yakym, United States Indiana House Representative to advocate for seizure first aid to be implemented in all schools, regardless of a known student with epilepsy.

She is also advocating for all states to implement the Seizure Safety School Law, which only 21 states have adopted so far.

To further her outreach, Bauer launched her own website, The Purple Project Epilepsy Awareness, in April 2022, to share epilepsy education and highlight epilepsy warriors.

Bauer’s passion for empowering others with epilepsy stems from her own experience and the grace of God. She hopes to inspire others to push their limits and not let their diagnosis define them. Her message to those newly diagnosed with epilepsy is to keep pushing through and know that you are not alone.

Bauer’s advocacy efforts show the power of turning personal struggles into a mission to help others. She is a true epilepsy warrior, and her impact on the epilepsy community is immeasurable.