The Malta Independent 19 December 2018, Wednesday

MEPs Mizzi and Dalli nominate Bjorn Formosa for the European Citizen’s Prize

Thursday, 8 March 2018, 10:07 Last update: about 11 months ago

In recognition for the tremendous contribution he is making to society, Labour MEPs Marlene Mizzi and Miriam Dalli have nominated ALS sufferer Bjorn Formosa for the European Citizen’s Prize, a Labour Party statement said.

This nomination is based on Bjorn’s altruism, courage and determination to elave behind a legacy that supports other ALS sufferers.

In a joint statement, MEPs Mizzi and Dalli described Bjorn as a true Maltese hero.

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“Bjorn is turning his pain and suffering into an opportunity to help others. And for this he must be recognised and honoured,” the MEPs said.

ALS is a chronic terminal disease that usually kills patients within three to four years. It causes the death of neurons controlling voluntary muscles and is characterized by stiff muscles, muscle twitching, and gradually worsening weakness due to muscles decreasing in size. This result in difficulty to speak,  swallow and other problems linked to mobility.

Bjorn was diagnosed with ALS at just 28 years of age. Instead of giving up, he has dedicated his time to setting up ALS Malta and Dar Bjorn, a home for all those diagnosed with ALS, MS and neuro-patients.

Bjorn is also sponsoring a doctoral research programme in order to increase expertise and research in the field. The foundation aims to raise awareness, improve the quality of life of patients and promote research.

“Bjorn has shown what true selflessness, civic sense, generosity and altruism really mean. Bjorn is an inspiration to us all. We believe that he deserves to be honoured with the European Citizen’s Prize,” MEPs Marlene Mizzi and Miriam Dalli said.

Each year, the European Parliament awards the European Citizen's Prize to citizens, groups, associations or organisations who have displayed exceptional achievements or outstanding commitment to society in various areas. Every Member of the European Parliament has the right to nominate one person or organisation for the prize. The winners will be announced and given the award at the European Citizens’ Prize ceremony in October.

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