The SMA community is constantly trying to spread awareness for a disease that most have never heard of. SMA is relatively unknown despite being #1 genetic killer of children under two. We are always looking for unique and creative ways to help get people informed. When Mrs. Sheldon, the librarian at Rolling Ridge Elementary School (school Jadon attends) came to us with her Flat Stanley idea, we were overwhelmed with her creativity and enthusiasm as well as the potential “reach” of this project.
We feel Mrs. Sheldon explains it best in this short video:
All 450 students at Rolling Ridge Elementary have read a funny book titled, Flat Stanley, written by Jeff Brown. The book is about a young boy named Stanley Lambchop. He is accidentally squished “as flat as a pancake” when a bulletin board falls on him. Stanley is fine, except for the fact he is very flat. Stanley discovers some advantages to being flat. He can slide under doors, go into sidewalk grates, and even fold himself up small enough to fit into an envelope. When Stanley wanted to visit friends in California, his parents folded him up and placed him in the mail.
All the students made their own Flat Stanley and they have been sent near and far. Accompanying each Flat Stanley is an SMA warrior or angel. Over 100 SMA kiddos are represented!
The project is simple, when someone receives a packet we simply ask that they take their Flat Stanley and SMA Warrior/Angel on some adventures. Take them to fun, exciting places, hang out with you at the movies or just have them at Christmas dinner but make sure to take pictures and send the pictures back so we can see where they have been. We hope to have pictures from all over the world. Pictures can be emailed to: email@example.com
Here is another blog telling what we want you to know about SMA: SMA Awareness – What We Want You to Know
Many Flat Stanleys and SMA Warriors/Angels have already been out doing some pretty awesome things. Check out these adventures!
Wednesday night the Chick-fil-A in Olathe hosted a small fundraiser for Rolling Ridge Elementary benefiting Jadon’s Hope Foundation. Well… small is what we thought it might be. We are quickly learning that with these amazing new friends from Rolling Ridge – nothing is small!
Because of cold and flu season we are still not taking The BUG out of doors. However, his amazing teacher took a laptop and we Skyped in (that’s Ms. Lentz holding Jadon in the pictures below.) Jadon could see and hear the events at the restaurant and watch the contestants compete in the chicken eating contest and frozen t-shirt contest. Skyping also meant that everyone could come over and say hi to Jadon. Needless to say he was incredibly excited and soaking up the moment!
That’s The BUG on the computer screen, right in the middle of the action
When someone would come up and say “Hi”, Jadon became through the roof excited and began vocalizing louder than we have heard since his trach surgery in July. For the past month, Jadon hasn’t made any sound and only recently started vocalizing again. Parents, I know it may sound inviting to have your child be silent, but trust me, complete, not a sound silent is no fun at all. When his classmates would come on the screen, Jadon would get really loud and he had a great time cheering on the contestant participants. Mad props go out to Rashaud Johnson for winning the nugget eating contest and to Michelle Williams for winning the frozen t-shirt contest.
It was very emotional to see such a large turnout. Kristin said she got misty eyed walking in seeing how many cars were in the parking lot and going through the drive-through and seeing the number of people in the restaurant. She said every table was occupied and people were even standing up- overwhelming for sure!! And to see all the kids there – wow! There is nothing better than kids helping kids.
We won’t know the total donation from the night for a couple more days but there was $150 in the donation bucket alone. One of the cashiers said it was a very good night. We will have to wait and see, but I think it is safe to say that SMA awareness was spread and money was raised to increase the fight. Thank you, thank you , thank you.