Child Patients Save 2015 Family Advocacy Day!
More than 230 people, including 44 child patients from across the U.S. and their family members, participated this week at the 11th annual Speak Now for Kids Family Advocacy Day in Washington, D.C. Patients ranged from one-year old to 19 years old with a variety of medical conditions. Their perseverance through challenging circumstances made them heroes in our eyes.
The two days were filled with excitement. Families got time to know each other, have fun, explore Washington, D.C. and meet with their members of Congress.
On June 15, Family Advocacy Day began with a welcome lunch that helped patient families learn more about influencing Congress. Participants went on a bus tour of the nation’s capital and its monuments. Their evening involved a Patriotic Celebration to honor our child heroes in attendance. There was a live band, a magician, face painting, caricature drawings, games, food and more.
June 16 was a busy day filled with congressional visits. Participants conducted more than 145 congressional visits. Of those visits, 51 were with U.S. Senate offices and 94 were with U.S. House offices. U.S. Senators and original sponsors of the ACE Kids Act of 2015, Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Michael Bennet (D-CO), addressed child heroes and their families at an afternoon luncheon.
Participants yielded immediate results with their congressional visits. Just two days afterward, the ACE Kids Act of 2015 gained nine new cosponsors.
Another highlight of Family Advocacy Day was the Children’s Hospital Association’s Photo Exhibit. Earlier this year, 250 photos were submitted by 57 children’s hospitals for consideration. A total of 50 photos were selected by a panel of judges for the exhibit.
This year’s Family Advocacy Day was successful, and we are eager to sustain the momentum!