In conjunction with the Chris Evert Children’s Hospital, this group has developed a program to bring awareness to amblyopia or Lazy Eye which is the leading cause of vision loss in childhood. A panel of eye care professionals was created to offer free vision screenings to children. Their main message is that “no child should have to grow up with amblyopia” and they urge a good vision screening by a pediatrician, trained volunteer, optometrist or ophthalmologist before starting kindergarten. They’ve received a grant from the NIH to promote this program through public education.
Contact Information: BrowardHealth.org/KidsVision; Bruce A. Miller, MD; Phone: 954-424-5959; Cell: 954-249-4592
Be The Match offers people the unique opportunity to help a patient by donating bone marrow or umbilical cord blood. Thousands of patients with leukemia and other life-threatening diseases depend on the Be The Match Registry to find a match. A patient’s doctor can contact the National Marrow Donor Program to search the Be The Match Registry and other registries worldwide to access more than 13 million donors and 400,000 umbilical cord blood units.
Contact Information: BeTheMatch.org; 1-800-MARROW2
Locks of Love is a public non-profit organization that provides hairpieces to financially disadvantaged children in the United States and Canada under age 21 suffering from long-term medical hair loss from any diagnosis. They meet a unique need for children by using donated hair to create the highest quality hair prosthetics. Most of the children helped by Locks of Love have lost their hair due to a medical condition called alopecia areata, which has no known cause or cure. Their mission is to return a sense of self, confidence and normalcy to children suffering from hair loss by utilizing donated ponytails to provide the highest quality hair prosthetics to financially disadvantaged children. The children receive hair prostheses free of charge or on a sliding scale, based on financial need.
Project or Activity: Donate hair or money; hold your own Locks of Love event, volunteer in Palm Beach County to open mail and enter data.
Contact Information: Locks of Love; Phone: 561-833-7332; 234 Southern Blvd., West Palm Beach, FL 33405-2701
Michael Stolzenberg Rehabilitative Trust *
On July 22, 2008, Michael was rushed to the emergency room with a bacterial infection that was not responding to antibiotics. Shortly after he arrived, he went into septic shock and the doctors were forced to put him on a ventilator. His condition quickly worsened to the point of hopelessness, and as a last ditch effort, he was put on continuous dialysis. The doctors and nurses at Joe DiMaggio’s Children’s Hospital made heroic efforts over the next seven weeks to keep Mikey alive, and have said that he was one of the five sickest patients ever treated in their Pediatric Intensive Care Unit. Identification of the bacteria as Chromobacterium Violacium (a bacteria which lives in tropical soil and is not usually a problem unless the person has an immunological disorder) was key to his survival, as once the bacteria was identified, the doctors could target it with effective antibiotics.
Miraculously, Mikey survived with his intelligence and wit; however, oxygen depravation to his limbs has resulted in the amputation of both hands and both feet. Mikey will have to live with the results of his illness for the rest of his life. At this point, it is unknown whether Mikey will be able to write, use a computer or even feed or dress himself, much less participate in the every-day normal activities that he so enjoyed prior to his illness. Up until July 22nd, Mikey was an avid athlete and had just earned the starting quarterback position on his pee wee tackle football team; he also enjoyed playing lacrosse, riding his bike and all of the other activities most 8-year-olds thrive on.
Michael’s only hope of regaining some independence and normalcy in his life is to have superior prosthetics. The prosthetics that will allow him to participate in physical activities and to take care of himself in any manner are not the type approved by health insurance. While many amputees can survive with the basic prosthetics covered by insurance, they are usually only faced with one amputation, not four. Compounding the issue is that Michael is only 8, and the four prosthetics will need to be replaced bi-annually as he grows. This is not a task for any one family to face alone.
Mikey dreams of walking and running again, of being able to feed himself, and having some independence and quality of life. Please help us make all of Mikey’s dreams come true! There are no limits.
Project or Activity: Participation in Trust Events, Raise Money for Donation to the trust
Contact Information: The Michael Stolzenberg Trust 1840 Main Street, Suite 202 Weston, FL