BENEFITING: Solve ME/CFS Initiative
Hi everyone, this is Matthew and I thank you so much for visiting my fundraising page. After much reflection, for my Bar Mitzvah project, I have decided to support the Solve ME/CFS Initiative (formerly the CFIDS Association) in honor of those, like my Aunt Karen, who are challenged to live with ME/CFS everyday. My Aunt Karen is one of the sweetest people I know and an amazing mom to my cousins Bebe and Adam. Before she was plagued with symptoms of ME/CFS she was pursuing a career in musical theater and had received her masters in drama therapy and loved working with children. She has one of the most beautiful voices I have ever heard. While Aunt Karen always tries to put a good front on and is always so concerned about burdening others, I know how hard it has been for her to suffer with the myriad of debilitating symptoms caused by ME/CFS. Fortunately, Aunt Karen has been doing a little better this year, but many with ME/CFS worsen year after year and become so severe that they are housebound.
For those who don't know, ME/CFS stands for Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and is a devastating medical illness that affects at least one million people in the U.S. and 17 million people worldwide. It often begins suddenly with a severe flu-like illness that doesn't resolve or improve. People with ME/CFS have to deal with an array of disabling symptoms that can vary over time and from person to person including severe muscle and joint pain, dizziness, migraines, digestive issues, suppressed immune systems and more. Their energy and stamina are limited and often unpredictable. That can make it hard to do everyday things and challenging to plan in advance. Your friend or family with ME/CFS may look fine when you get together, but when you're not around, they often feel downright miserable.
Women, men and kids from diverse backgrounds get ME/CFS and we don't know why, although research is starting to put the puzzle together. Genetics, environmental factors and triggers (like viruses) are likely factors in what kicks off the illness and then keeps people from getting better. Few doctors know how to help and our fragmented medical system makes it challenging to address all the parts of the body that go haywire with ME/CFS. Knowledgeable health care professionals do their best to lead a trial-and-error search for symptom relief and ways to improve quality of life. Both can be elusive.
I chose the Solve ME/CFS Initiative to raise money for because I know they are working every day to make the the future better for people with ME/CFS such as my Aunt Karen. Focusing solely on research, the Solve ME/CFS Initiative is determined to turn science into treatment and end the life-altering disability, stigma and isolation ME/CFS causes.
I would be honored if you would join my efforts for this important cause. Any donations made through this webpage are directly donated to the Solve ME/CFS Initiative. In addition to accepting donations through this web page, I have been raising funds through sales of some of my games, books and other items. Thanks so much for listening and learning and being part of my Bar Mitzvah project.
All my best, Matthew