The Issue: Infants with Spinal Muscular Atrophy
Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a collection of inherited diseases that causes deterioration in the muscles and eventual fatality, according to a report from the National Institutes of Health. Four types of the disease exist, each with a different severity. Type I causes extreme weakness, difficulty breathing, and often paralysis in infants, whereas type IV is the mildest version, generally beginning adulthood. Although there is currently no cure for SMA or treatment for muscle weakness, supportive care can help infants and children with the disease live comfortably.
The Campaign: Providing Care Packages for Infants with SMA
If 30 people donate $10 to this Grassroots campaign, then the Greater Florida Chapter of Families of Spinal Muscular Atrophy (FSMA) can send care packages to two families whose infants have been diagnosed with type 1 SMA. The care packages will include equipment and activities to help the families care for their children, including a Fisher-Price swing, a Baby Einstein DVD, handprint molds, a sheepskin blanket, an infant bath pad, a motorized bubble wand, and more. Every year, FSMA sends 200 of these care packages to families to help them provide their children with a comfortable life. Each additional $150 raised will provide a care package for another recently diagnosed child.
Greater Florida Chapter of Families of Spinal Muscular Atrophy
More than 25 years ago, a small group of parents gathered in support of one another. Each had at least one child diagnosed with spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) and wanted to educate other families affected by the disease and fund research that could lead to a cure. In the years that followed, Families of Spinal Muscular Atrophy has grown across the country and beyond, with 31 chapters in the United States alone. Through their efforts, they have raised more than $50 million for SMA research, including a grant that mapped and cloned the SMA gene.
The Greater Florida Chapter of Families of Spinal Muscular Atrophy has a board comprised of five volunteers who help families in their area. They team up to support fundraising and outreach events including the Maluko Charity Golf Classic and the annual Greater Florida Walk & Roll Across America to Cure SMA. When families are diagnosed with SMA, volunteers connect them with local resources and provide care packages for the infants and children who will be facing a difficult future.
See how Groupon helps you discover local causes and lend a helping hand at the Groupon Grassroots blog.