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As we’re winding down after another excellent OCD Awareness Week, it’s great to look back on the various events and activities that took place. What stuck out the most during #OCDweek was the willingness of people in the OCD community to lend a hand and support, whether you did something as simple as sharing information with someone, or offered encouragement, advice, or personal expertise.

Helping others and recognizing those who go above and beyond in their efforts does not need to be limited to an OCD Awareness Week, however. Every day is an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of those with OCD and related disorders. The IOCDF’s Hero Award is an accolade designed to recognize those people who do just that.

Chris Trondsen and Kevin Putman, the recipients of the 2015 IOCDF Hero Award, which was presented at the Annual OCD Conference in Boston over the summer, are perfect examples of how diverse award winners’ experiences can be. What truly matters in the end and what unites them is the impact they leave on those around them. The two individuals who nominated Chris and Kevin share what inspired their nominations.

Amanda Rosenberg, the individual who nominated Chris Trondsen, writes:

A true hero is someone to admire and trust; someone who inspires you because of their brave, selfless, caring and encouraging character. Without hesitation, I wanted to nominate Chris Trondsen. Chris saved my life, and for that I will be entirely grateful to him for the rest of my life. Because of Chris’s involvement in the IOCDF and sharing his story by presenting at the IOCDF Conference, I found help…It is a true fact that I have never seen someone put others first, and give beyond measures the way Trondsen has and still continues to do. His drive to help others who suffer from the same horrors he did is impossible to match.

Says Saharah Shrout, the individual who nominated Kevin Putman:

Kevin Putman is an OCD warrior! He has created a network of support in his community through his local IOCDF affiliate, through his nonprofit Run OCD and his fundraising events, such as Ping Pong for OCD. Kevin also has a leadership role in the North Michigan Support group and provides inspiration to sufferers, loved ones and treatment providers alike through his personal journey…Kevin works tirelessly to spread the word about OCD to reduce the stigma, raise awareness and build hope.

Now it’s your turn! Let us know who in the OCD and related disorders community has inspired you in his or her efforts to serve as an advocate for OCD and related disorders and help raise awareness, whether it’s through a one-time event or gesture or through a series of activities. The winner will be recognized at the 23rd Annual OCD Conference in Chicago next summer.

You can learn more about the award and submit a nomination here. We’re excited to hear about and recognize the heroic efforts taking place where you are!

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