A set of Chinese and English booklets aimed at educating young people not to discriminate against people with epilepsy have been published by charity group Enlighten Hong Kong. According to the group, one out of 200 people suffers from the disease, affecting an estimated one family in every 45 at any one time. It occurs in people of either sex, any race, social or age group, and affects people of all levels of intellectual ability. The disease involves a disturbance in the brain's normal electrical activity and can take many forms. The four main types of attack are blackouts, tonic-clonic seizures, partial seizures and complex partial seizures. In the colourfully illustrated booklet Because We Are Friends, a girl who suffers from epilepsy describes what it is like when she has a seizure. She says the seizures do not hurt and can be controlled with medication. She also gives pointers on how other children can help when she has an attack - one of the common misconceptions being that it is okay to put objects in the sufferer's mouth to stop them biting their tongue. Having been made fun of by other children, she emphasises that epilepsy is not a mental disease and hopes others can understand and accept her as a friend. Orla Gilroy, executive director of Enlighten Hong Kong, hopes sales of the booklet will raise funds for the organisation. 'The purpose of these booklets is to promote awareness about epilepsy and educate people about what to do when they witness a seizure,' she said. 'We felt a great place to start would be with the younger generation and everyone, no matter how young or old, will learn something about epilepsy when they read it.' To this end, Enlighten has been organising talks in schools to promote epilepsy awareness and first aid for seizures. The organisation has printed 5,000 copies of the booklet in Chinese and 2,000 in English. They are priced at $50 each and are available directly from Enlighten or from Dymocks and Paddyfield. Enlighten Hong Kong is a self-funded charity group set up under Enlighten-Action for Epilepsy in Edinburgh, Scotland, which has been operating since 1996. The Hong Kong branch was born from the need to supply the community with information on issues relating to epilepsy, handled by full-time, qualified staff. Its objectives include providing free counselling to people with epilepsy, their families and friends; providing accurate and up-to-date bilingual advice and information; promoting public understanding on the disease; and ensuring equal opportunities and social inclusion for patients. 'Our services are free because we have frequently found that those who need them cannot afford to pay. We try to and want to make a difference,' Ms Gilroy added. To find out more about Enlighten, visit www.enlightenhk.org or call 2820 0111.