I learned something important today. This coming Wednesday–February 28, 2018–is World Rare Disease Day.
I wouldn’t have known this had I not walked through Mission Beach’s Belmont Park and met some smiling volunteers. They are working to raise awareness about rare diseases. They had a table set up near the carousel and told me a little about this often overlooked problem.
Rare diseases are usually caused by faulty genes, and about half of the people affected by rare diseases are children. Almost a third of these children will not live to see their fifth birthday.
Sadly, about half of all rare diseases do not have a specific foundation supporting or researching the condition. As you can see, it’s critical for many kids that we spread the word and provide support for those who are sick, and fund research in the search for effective treatments.
Two websites where you can learn more and perhaps help are here and here.
Please click my photo of the information chart, and it will enlarge so you can read it. Feel free to share any of these images.
Today I discovered an inspired project that helps school students learn about the Holocaust, and how to fight injustice and bullying.
The Butterfly Project had a special event this afternoon at the San Diego History Center. By pure chance I saw a sign for the event as I walked through Balboa Park.
Inside the San Diego History Center, I watched as compassionate visitors painted ceramic butterflies–one for each child who perished in the Holocaust.
Then I heard presentations by two speakers who had family members endure the unspeakable horrors of the Holocaust. These powerful presentations, complete with photographs and touchable artifacts, are often made to students in school classrooms. The presentations encourage Hope, Optimism, Kindness, Dignity and the Power of One. I learned how there were amazing instances where the courage of one person against brutal Nazis saved many innocent lives in labor and concentration camps.
One person can speak out. One person can take risks for others. One positive person can change many lives.
According to their mission statement, The Butterfly Project is a call to action through the arts, using the lessons of the Holocaust to educate about the dangers of hatred and bigotry through the painting of ceramic butterflies, permanently displayed around the world to memorialize each of the 1.5 million children who perished in the Holocaust.
The Butterfly Project seeks to partner with anyone that has or wants to build a connection to history, honoring those who died in the Holocaust. They want to get their beautiful, symbolic butterflies into schools, museums and community centers. They want to be included in classrooms across the country as an important part of Holocaust and anti-bullying education.
Can you help? Click this link to learn how to get involved.
If you’re in San Diego, please consider participating in the Aseltine School’s 4th Annual Holiday Food Drive. It will be taking place on Wednesday, December 6, 2017, from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm at the Uptown Tavern in Hillcrest, which is located at 1236 University Avenue.
Bring non-perishable food items such as peanut butter, canned chicken and tuna, cereal, canned fruit and vegetables, soup and pasta. The food you bring will support students and families in need.
Aseltine School is a supportive, positive place where K-12 students are helped to overcome a variety of difficulties. Their innovative program transforms young lives. Learn more at Aseltine’s website.
Your generosity will be greeted with lots of big smiles!
A group called Give Love New York is in San Diego this weekend during 2017 Maker Faire. You can find them near the Old Globe in Balboa Park, passing out carnations and inviting passersby to dance and converse and smile and sing and play games and write messages containing kindness, positivity and wisdom!
This unique Give Love project is the brainchild of Alive Worldwide. Their mission is to use creativity to encourage and spread human compassion.
Very cool! Events such as this could be held in every corner of the world! It’s very easily done. Why not?