When I arrived at the JW Marriott- Washington DC, I realized the full scope of the Shot@Life summit. I had an opportunity to grab a quick lunch with some other mom bloggers who were also attending summit. It is wonderful how we all resided in different states but are connected on so many levels. The one commonality, moms with a mission.
Welcome to day 1 Of the summit. Our first evening of the summit was filled with an overview of the United Nations Foundation, Shot@Life campaign, Childhood Vaccines:Global Perspective, how Champions fit in and the film screening of Revolutionary Optimists.
As a champion, we are educated and trained on being advocates in our communities. Statistically, I was blown away at the depth of global health associated with vaccines. Did you know 1.5 million children die each year from vaccine preventable diseases? Every 20 seconds a child dies from vaccine preventable diseases, wow! As a mother I was touched by this campaign because it it second nature for me to take my children to their pediatrician to get their vaccines. It was never really thought about it was just a matter of a copay and a drive to the doctor’s office that is typically within a 10 mile driving distance. Our first evening we learned that mothers in developing countries may walk (not drive) miles and stand for hours to get vaccines for their children. The weight of their world vs. mine is outside of my very blessed and fortunate realm of understanding. The fact my children have reached their milestones and giving $20 can provide 4 vaccines for a child is a no brainer for me. The joy of a mother celebrating her child’s next birthday is a wonderful event regardless of the country.
I thought why not do what I can to become a part of this campaign to give another child a Shot@Life!
The film, Revolutionary Optimists was about two Indian children who were young advocates within the slums of India. These children were the ages of my oldest and on a mission to spread the word on vaccinating the community children as well as supplying adequate water to their community of over 9,000. These children have presented their case to government officials and definitely have left an remarkable impression. It was an inspiring story for children to see how their voices can make a difference and also to emphasize the importance of being grateful. I wrestle with this all the time with my children when I uncover the amount of “waste” we have in a given week.
The perspective on becoming a Shot@Life Champion was so much clearer after viewing this yet to be released film.