Parkinson’s. Not just an old person’s disease

We are Spotlight YOPD, a UK-based charity on a mission to raise awareness around YOPD and spread the word that Parkinson’s is not just an old person’s disease. Young-onset Parkinson’s, or YOPD, refers to those diagnosed under the age of 50, and there are thousands of us here in the UK.

YOPD occurs when people are in the prime of their life, often in the middle of building a career, a family and financial security. Therefore, the impact of Parkinson’s is far greater than those diagnosed later in life.


“I was fearful for the future. Would I be able to walk my daughter down the aisle? Would I be able to pay the mortgage?”
Drew, diagnosed aged 35

With YOPD, it isn’t just the life stage that is different; the disease differs too. Compared with later onset Parkinson’s, YOPD tends to progress slower, has a stronger genetic component and presents with a different set of symptoms (Frozen shoulder, clawing of toes, depression, and insomnia, to name a few). Learn more about the symptoms of YOPD.

Our Vision

We want to become a beacon for all things YOPD, shining a light on better living now and mobilising research for a brighter future. Founded and run by people with the condition, Spotlight YOPD aims to represent and build a supportive community where we can share our stories and knowledge. We want to empower patients to take control of their condition by ensuring they have access to research, innovative treatments, and the proper support. Find out more.


“It was heart-breaking telling my mum and dad, and telling my children was hard, but they’ve been great.”
Sarah, diagnosed aged 44

Our Community

Receiving a YOPD diagnosis can be isolating, but it is not something that needs to be faced alone. At Spotlight YOPD, we are a strong community of people living with the condition, united by our diagnosis but each with our own unique story.

Read our founder, Gaynor’s story.

How can you get involved?


“Everyone with Parkinson’s has their own story, their own journey.”
Eros, diagnosed aged 36