Progressive Foundation of Clay County to sponsor 5K

West Point Mayor, Robbie Robinson, signed a proclamation naming April as Sickle Cell Disease Awareness Month with member of the Progressive Foundation of Clay County, Inc., Tamara Ivy, and President of the Progressive Foundation of Clay County, Inc., Carolyn Poston.
By: 
DONNA SUMMERALL
Staff Writer

West Point Mayor, Robbie Robinson, signed a proclamation Tuesday morning naming April as Sickle Cell Disease Awareness Month with member of the Progressive Foundation of Clay County, Inc., Tamara Ivy, and President of the Progressive Foundation of Clay County, Inc., Carolyn Poston.

Sickle Cell Disease effects predominately African - Americans and other people of color. According to the Center of Disease Control and Prevention, the exact number of people living with Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) in the United States is unknown, but estimated to be approximately 100,000.

James Gates, author of "The Essence of Sickle Cell Disease" wrote a book about his lifelong struggle with the disease.

"A lot of people have only heard of the name, Sickle Cell Disease," Gates said. "I've had it my whole life and I wanted to write a book to explain it to people in layman's terms, not like a medical text book."

Gates said both of his parents carry the Sickle Cell gene. That is how a child is produced with the disease. 

"As long as someone who carries the gene, has children with a non-carrier, there are no offspring with Sickle Cell," Gates said. "But lucky me, both my parents had the gene. The life expectancy for someone with Sickle Cell is 40. I'm 38 now. But both of my parents were very healthy, my mother is still alive."

Sickle Cell Disease, also known as Sickle Cell Anemia, is extremely rare, and is most prevalent among African Americans. Sickle cell disease is a group of disorders that affects hemoglobin, the molecule in red blood cells that delivers oxygen to cells throughout the body. People with this disorder have atypical hemoglobin molecules called hemoglobin S, which can distort red blood cells into a sickle, or crescent, shape.

"Because of the impact of SCD on the lives of people of color and the need to raise public awareness about the disease, the Progressive Foundation is pleased to launch its signature program to address these two aspects of SCD," Poston said. "The board of directors invites businesses and individuals to its Inaugural Sickle Cell Awareness Day, 8 a.m. - noon, Saturday, April 28, at Marshall Park."

Poston said activities will include a 5K run/walk, snacks, games, music and information about SCD.

The Progressive Foundation of Clay County, Inc., is a non-profit institution organized exclusively for charitable, religious, educational and scientific purposes. It seeks to make a difference in the lives of the citizens of Clay County. The Foundation also seeks to promote, contact and work with other non-profits which will in crease the flow of information among similarly focused entities, enabling users to make better decisions about community issues.

Category: