Juvenile Arthritis is a difficult condition plaguing many of our youth today. In fact, as many as three hundred thousand children in just the United States have been diagnosed. Despite this, we suffer from the unfortunate, demographic stigma about the victims of this debilitating condition, that they tend only to be elderly. This stigma has put serious roadblocks in the way of making headway against juvenile arthritis. Even worse, this form of arthritis tends to be a very serious issue. This is an autoimmune condition, and has severe effects on children’s joints. The body attacking these joints results in symptoms including swelling, stiffness, and permanent damage. It is also severe enough to cause death if left completely alone.
There is, however, good news. The Arthritis National Research Foundation is taking a stand against juvenile arthritis and funding research for a cure. Its charitable work, however, does not stop there. They aim to make a difference in not only the medical treatment, but the social treatment and acknowledgment of Juvenile Arthritis. The foundation, accessible at curearthritis.org, spearheads a massive campaign of awareness to spread the message that this is an issue that needs solving. One of their many tools, also one of the most useful, is a set of message-focused apparel ranging from a simple bracelet to t-shirts. The foundation has a tremendously capable board of directors, with members who are university professors, judges, and former high-level politicians. For this reason, they maintain a tremendously high level of transparency and accountability, the details of which are available on their website. These standards include public releases of financial information and a top 1% ranking from Charity Navigator.
The foundation also runs a fantastic program called the Juvenile Arthritis Crew. The Crew is signing up members across the country, bringing together those who can make an impact. Their purpose is explained through a pledge designed to bring out the very best in people and put it to the forefront of this campaign. People who join the crew devote their talents and passions to this cause, spreading the message via art, writing, and tales of personal experience. They also pledge to engage members of their communities and take the lead with regard to encouraging as many people as possible to join the fight.
To maintain all of this success in advocacy, the ANRF cannot purely fund itself. That is why they accept contributions to those who can give. These contributions are not, however, required- especially not if one joins the Cure Arthritis Crew. Thanks to the Arthritis National Research Foundation, the stage is set for a massive display of advocacy and awareness campaigning. Small actions make a huge difference and can have a serious snowball effect. Support can be given via social media, donation, or even the clothes you wear, thanks to the foundation’s wearable awareness tools. This July, and every month after, we can do a lot to solve this issue.