The old adage “the road to hell is paved with good intentions” came to mind yesterday when, just for the heck of it, I tried to estimate how many resolutions, promises, and commitments being made on New Years Day 2014 would see the light of day in a month.
For some folks a month-long commitment can seem like a lifetime. After stepping on my scale this morning, an eternity might be more like it.
Each year when the calendar turns over we get the chance to use fresh eyes to look at our world, even if just for a moment. Good news stories seem to outweigh the negative stuff we are served up daily, and maybe our overall outlook on the world we live in is little more optimistic. And then comes January 2nd.
Today I would like to take a shot at keeping the good vibes rolling by introducing you to someone, who with her team and network are working hard to do great things for children very much in need of special assistance. I recently had the opportunity to meet Jackie Waters, Founder of Help Your Hero, an organization dedicated to providing an engaging and uplifting environment for children facing challenging health issues through a fun, unique concept.
Help Your Hero was created to provide a platform for children to create their own super hero persona, while turning their ailment into a nemesis; and then along with the support of friends and family, they take on their archenemy.
Help Your Hero recognizes that positive changes can occur in the quality of life of anyone going through medically-challenging times when they are given the opportunity to inspire and engage with their own story in a fun and entertaining way.
We have all heard at one time or another, how a child dealing with a terrible medical condition often meets that challenge with surprising strength, grace and charisma, sometimes more impressively than adults. For those of us who grew up with our comic books as companions, we know these are the same qualities we find in our most beloved superheroes.
Help Your Hero is a new YourMembership customer, and we are excited about being able to help Jackie and her group bring to life a vision she has work tirelessly on for the past four years.
Truth be told, after working with associations, non-profits, and other cause-oriented organizations for over 13 years, I have seldom had the chance to really get to know the story behind the birth of an organization. That is part of what makes Help Your Hero special. Because the story for this organization does not begin in 2009, but in 1991, when Jackie’s sister, Tracie Bartlett Siemer, was diagnosed with Mesenchymal Chondrosarcoma, a rare form of brain cancer.
“We want everyone to be able to look at people who are fighting a disease differently, without pity, but with love,” Jackie shared with me. “My sister Tracy was the inspiration behind our efforts, and our first Superhero. When she was diagnosed while seven months pregnant in 1991, she never asked ‘why me, God,’ but instead maintained an unwavering faith until her passing that she would beat the disease.
“Our family witnessed the kindness of so many people, and Tracy asked, ‘How can we pay all these people back?’ Jackie remarked. “My response to her was simple. We may not be able to pay that particular person back, but we can pay it forward to others that need it. This is the major inspiration behind our four-year journey to create Help Your Hero.”
“YourMembership.com is proud to play a role in the future success of Help Your Hero,” said J.P. Guilbault, President and Chief Operating Officer for YourMembership.Com. “The important resources that Jackie and her staff are dedicated to providing are an inspiration to us all. Our entire team celebrates the launching of this invaluable site, and we look forward to helping them on their journey to fulfill their mission.”
Part of what makes a wonderful, caring idea turn in something much, much more is the dedication and selfless actions of the people determined to see it through. If you have ever directly experienced or known of a child going through daunting health issues, you know there are never enough resources, and never enough people around to help care for their needs.
Being a part of an organization like Help Your Hero that changes peoples’ lives by making a real difference is special. Being part of a company that has the privilege of helping them carry out that mission is pretty great, too.
Have a great New Year!