Help sponsor children in over 15 states and 3 countries who want to participate in our global awareness project this upcoming year! At the age of 7 my daughter was diagnosed with a rare genetic disorder that at the time only had 100 documented cases worldwide. We were anxious to meet with her geneticist who could hopefully offer some answers, treatments or support but at our appointment our hearts sank when he said, "I don't have any information for you, maybe you can find a support group." When I left that appointment, I couldn't believe that in this day and age my daughter had a diagnosis that no one could help with. I soon realized it wasn't just me, thousands of families across the country were being told the same thing with their rare or undiagnosed conditions and "rare" didn't seem to be that important to the medical industry. If a program, lab or facility couldn't perform research or offer a product that could benefit thousands or even millions of people, there didn’t seem to be any interest. My background is in photography (not health) and I decided to start providing photo sessions for children with rare and undiagnosed medical conditions to see what kind of awareness I could raise for them. I would share their stories along with their images on a website (awareofangels.org) to try and make connections with others in a similar situation at a much faster speed then waiting on the medical field to share information (which can often take years). In sharing this information, I found that getting these rare conditions on the world wide web would reach not only other parents who spent endless nights searching for answers online but, also medical professionals who were also, searching for answers and other patients all around the world! It connected families, it connected those in the medical field, it raised awareness for rare disorders, it raised awareness for the struggles these families go through, it brought up the importance of genetic testing and that it can provide new treatments for rare disorders and even save lives! Aware of Angels has also given genetic testing opportunities to over a dozen undiagnosed children along with their families and there are more opportunities for them every day. Most importantly, my little website raised awareness for these sweet children and showed the world that they are beautiful, smart, funny, loving, and so loved by their care givers and they deserve the best quality of life possible. The photographs I have taken in the last few years have made in onto television, magazines, portrait galleries, numerous websites, events and blogs. There is something about putting a real person, a real face with these stories and their diagnosis that touches the hearts of so many people. Over the last couple of years, I have had email requests from families in and out of the country, that want to participate in our project. I want to try and do my best to make it to all of these families, give them a beautiful gift and raise awareness for them and their diagnosis on a global level. Some of these children will not make it past their 5th birthday. Some of these parents will never know the cause of their child's rare medical condition, never know anyone else who has the same diagnosis and some of them will never know of possible cures or treatments that can improve the quality of life for their child. This is why we need your help! Funds donated sponsor the photo sessions for all currently interested families and the upcoming years costs: travel expenses for all 15+ states (and possibly out of country), printed photo books & CD's for families, any additional equipment needed to complete project, any costs associated with awareness photo displays or literature and adminstrative expenses. We are running the fundraising campaign for the next 30 days. Please help us in sharing this page to reach our goals! Feel free to contact us with any questions! Thank you in advance!