World Immunization Week: Giving children a Shot@Life through access to vaccines

Vaccines. It’s become such a controversial topic in America that we might as well add it alongside religion and politics as subjects to avoid during polite dinner conversation.  As a new mom I scouered bookshelves to educate myself on both sides of the discussion on vaccine safety and effectiveness to ensure I make the best choices for my son, Cole.

Then it hits me. Choice. There are other moms all over the world, who want to protect their children from preventable diseases, but they don’t have access to vaccines. These moms don’t have a choice.  As a result, many of them will have to hold their beloved babies in their arms as they take their last breath on earth.  Every child deserves a shot at a healthy life, which is why I’m supporting the Shot@Life campaign. Cole inspires me to want to help other children that are less fortunate than he is.

For our love of children we need to learn about, advocate for, and donate vaccines.  With our help the United Nations Foundation’s Shot@Life campaign will decrease vaccine-preventable childhood deaths and give children a shot at a healthy life.  There are other organizations that are working towards the common goal of providing vaccines where they are most needed.  For example, I volunteer with a non-profit organization called Sustainable Healthcare for Haiti.

Sustainable Healthcare for Haiti (SHH) is in the process of planning and developing a medical clinic and children’s hospital in Jerusalem, Haiti, a city just north of Port-au-Prince. As you might have read or seen in the news recently, the cholera vaccine needs to be dispensed immediately to everyone in Haiti.  Doses are being prepared and distributed, but there are not enough clinics to vaccinate the population.  The medical clinic that SHH is building in Jerusalem could help to meet this dire need.

Join me in support of the Shot@Life campaign and Sustainable Healthcare for Haiti.  Support comes in many forms: a tweet on Twitter, a “like” on Facebook, a dollar donation. And just to be clear there is no affiliation between Shot@Life and Sustainable Healthcare for Haiti.  I’m just sharing what they both mean and represent to me!  For more information and to follow updates online, please stay connected.

Websites
sustainablehealthcareforhaiti.org
shot@life.org

Facebook
facebook.com/sustainablehealthcareforhaiti
facebook.com/shotatlifecampaign

Twitter
@shhbuilds
@shotatlife

Together, we can make a difference and save lives.

Shot@Life Join the Movement

Light it up blue for World Autism Awareness Day!

We try to teach our children all about life, but really our children teach us what life is all about.

Have you heard of Light It Up Blue? Light It Up Blue, in its third year, is a global initiative to help raise awareness about the growing public health concern that is autism. Iconic landmarks around the world will Light It Up Blue to show their support.Check out the Autism Speaks website for Light It Up Blue and check out the pictures – they are so amazing! My personal favorite is Niagra Falls.My son Cole and I will be wearing blue today and our hearts will be with all of the children and families that have been affected by autism.

Being a parent is a challenge, but when your child is diagnosed with autism that challenge becomes even greater. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates autism to be prevalent in 1 in 88 children (1 in 54 boys and 1 in 252 girls) in the U.S. Autism is the fastest-growing serious developmental disability in the U.S. There is no proven medical detection or cure for autism. I have a personal hunch that it has to do with both environmental toxins and genetic vulnerabilities.

The good news? A new study finds that 10% of autistic children can “bloom” and outgrow most of their disabilities by the time they reach adolescence. What can you and I do to help increase that percentage, as well as reduce the number of autistic children?

This Fall I am participating in the 2012 Greater Boston Walk Now for Autism Speaks. Team Mikey is named after my cousin’s son. He is a handsome, bright, fun little boy and was recently diagnosed with autism. Please help me raise funds to support this important cause. Although I’m not walking for several more months there is no better time to act than now, because April marks the beginning of Autism Awareness month. And today (April 2nd) is Autism Awareness Day! So help get my fundraising efforts off to an amazing start.

Every dollar counts! Here is the link to my Donation Page.