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Engaging the Community to keep Families Healthy and Active

Between hectic work schedules, preparing for back to school and striving to hold onto the final weeks of summer, parents have enough challenges facing them this time of the year. Keeping or getting your family on track toward an active healthy lifestyle can seem like a monumental task better left to those super parents who somehow have it all together. Adding an additional challenge like a food allergy only makes these aspirations seem even more unattainable.

The unfortunate reality is one in 13 U.S. children, roughly two in every classroom, and a total of 15 million Americans live with food allergies. As many parents know, getting your children to be healthy and active is much easier as a community effort. This becomes even more important with children who are at risk for anaphylaxis, a potentially life-threatening allergic reaction. Building an informed team of neighbors, teachers and friends can help ensure these parents are not facing this challenge alone. Just as a parent wouldn’t leave their child without supervision in a pool if they could not swim, parents of children with life-threatening food allergies need the support of their community to keep their children safe.

At Food Allergy Research and Education (FARE), we work to provide the public with useful information on how to prevent allergic reactions and what to do when one occurs. We have created a free 15-minute online course, on how to respond to someone having an anaphylactic reaction. The Save a Life: Recognizing and Responding to Anaphylaxis course includes:

• The definition and causes of anaphylaxis
• How to recognize signs of anaphylaxis
• What to do if someone is having an anaphylactic reaction
• How to safely use an epinephrine auto-injector

To help those at risk, we have worked to expand access to epinephrine, the first-line treatment for anaphylaxis. Today, nearly every state in the country either permits or requires schools to stock undesignated epinephrine in case of anaphylactic emergencies. Additionally, 31 states permit public venues like colleges, camps, sports arenas and restaurants to stock undesignated epinephrine.

Anaphylaxis is a complex reaction, but FARE aims to ensure that anyone who takes this course will be able to recognize it and respond with confidence. You can access the course by following this link. Keeping our children safe, healthy and active truly takes all of us working together.

About FARE:

Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) works on behalf of the 15 million Americans with food allergies, including all those at risk for life-threatening anaphylaxis. This potentially deadly disease affects 1 in every 13 children in the U.S. – or roughly two in every classroom. FARE’s mission is to improve the quality of life and the health of individuals with food allergies, and to provide them hope through the promise of new treatments. For more information, please visit www.foodallergy.org

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