Okay…now the focus can shift a little bit, with the holiday season out of the way and no more frequent trips to Calgary. I’ve been thinking for a long time about organizing an event where I could raise some funds and some awareness at the same time, for Juvenile Arthritis. The thinking stage has passed and now I am actually organizing a JA walk/run hosted at the school that my kids attend.
It has frustrated me immensely that there is nothing out there for kids with JA. No options for them to meet peers, exchange experiences, forget about their never ending struggles for a bit and just have some fun for a change. So many juvenile diseases have advocates and opportunities, not JA though. The public awareness about juvenile diabetes, epilepsy, Crohn’s disease, asthma etc. is much greater than for JA. I’m not sure what the reason is, maybe it’s just not sexy enough, maybe it’s because there is no famous face to it, honestly, I couldn’t tell you. It is because of the lack of awareness people often don’t understand the seriousness of this condition. I will keep trying to change that.
Even after contacting The Arthritis Foundation I found out they really didn’t have anything for our youth in their program. Sure, they have information, brochures, educational programs, but most of them are focused on adults. I was quite shocked to find out there is nothing out there that helps kids who are dealing with this crippling disease every single day of their lives, nothing that lifts their spirits, nothing that recognizes or encourages them in the battle they are battling.
Research is important, but seeing my child with a smile on her face is important too. So, Mohammed decided to go to the mountain. I’m currently investigating if The Arthritis Society is willing/able to offer camps, day trips, events etcetera for our youth, if funds can be raised for that. I want to work hard to raise money, but I also want monies that are raised directly benefits our kids. Hopefully The Arthritis Society is willing to designate funds raised specifically to towards that goal . If that’s not achievable, I am investigating the options of setting up a charity event at the Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation….we shall see!
In the mean time, we ARE organizing that walk! We set a tentative date for March 22. My girl decided to do a presentation and we are planning to do an assembly. I’m exploring some options to get some T-shirts printed and looking in to incentives for the students to raise some pennies! We’ll probably be setting up an on-line fundraise page, as well as the old fashioned pennies and quarters. I’ll keep you posted; hope to find out more soon!
In the mean time; this is the logo I designed for T-shirts, pretty cute huh!