How FARE’s Life-changing Research & Resources are Helping the 15 Million Americans with Food Allergies
By Sarah Ford on April 2, 2014
Featured Charity: Food Allergy Research & Education
Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) is the nation’s leading organization working 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 13 children in the United States—or roughly two in every classroom. FARE is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that was formed in 2012 as the result of a merger between the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network and the Food Allergy Initiative. FARE’s mission is to find a cure for food allergies, and to keep individuals with food allergies safe and included. FARE does this by investing in world-class research that advances treatment and understanding of the disease, providing evidence-based education and resources, undertaking advocacy at all levels of government, and increasing awareness of food allergies as a serious public health issue.
Helping People With Food Allergies & Supporting Life-changing Research
Food allergy is a disease in which the body’s immune system mistakenly targets a harmless food protein (an allergen) as a threat. To fight this threat, the body releases histamine and other chemicals, causing symptoms that can range from skin rashes and stomach problems to life-threatening anaphylaxis.
Although a person can be allergic to any food, eight foods (milk, egg, peanut, tree nuts, wheat, soy, fish and shellfish) cause 90 percent of all reactions in the U.S. Anyone at any age can develop a food allergy, but the impact on children is especially severe. There is no cure, and no standard treatment to prevent food allergy reactions. Strict avoidance of problem foods is the only way to stay safe.
FARE serves the food allergy community by ensuring resources to provide broader arrays of educational programs for managing food allergies at every stage of life, developing training programs for professionals serving those with food allergies, and support life-changing research.
Make an Impact by Supporting FARE
With the number of people who have food allergies increasing at a significant rate, this potentially fatal condition is a growing public health issue. The numbers tell the story:
- Food allergies affect up to 15 million Americans, including 1 in 13 children—roughly two in every classroom.
- Nearly 40% of these children have already experienced a severe or life-threatening reaction.
- The number of children with food allergies in the U.S. increased 50% between 1997 and 2011.
- Every three minutes, a food allergy reaction sends someone to the emergency room.
- Caring for children with food allergies costs families nearly $25 billion per year.
FARE works hard to ensure that every dollar raised advances our mission. These funds support life-changing initiatives in four key areas:
- Research: FARE is the world’s largest private source of funding for food allergy research. FARE-funded researchers are conducting studies that will deepen our understanding of food allergy and lead to safe, practical therapies that prevent potentially fatal reactions.
- Education: FARE’s educational programs and resources help individuals and families manage food allergies and live safer, healthier lives. With funds raised in the food allergy community in 2013, FARE developed an interactive online training program for restaurant staff in partnership with the National Restaurant Association, and created a series of educational webinars on topics of importance to individuals and families managing food allergies.
- Advocacy: Donations support FARE’s efforts to advance key federal, state and local initiatives, including improving access to life-saving epinephrine, increasing federal funding for research, and establishing food allergy management programs for schools, restaurants and camps. FARE was the leading advocate for the 2013 School Access to Emergency Epinephrine Act-groundbreaking federal legislation that incentivizes states to mandate their schools to stock undesignated epinephrine for use in allergic emergencies.
- Awareness: From securing national coverage of food allergies to implementing social media campaigns, FARE heightens awareness of food allergy as a significant and growing public health issue and works to tell the story of this life-altering disease. In 2013, donations enabled FARE to team with the Discovery Channel to produce an hour-long documentary, narrated by Steve Carell, about living with food allergies and the search for a cure.
Our thanks to Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) for helping us learn more about their work! To learn more about the impact FARE is making, visit www.foodallergy.org and connect with them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/FoodAllergyFARE.
With over 1.5 million nonprofit organizations in the United States, who should you support and why? The purpose of this blog is to help you discover and connect with some of America’s most trusted 501(c)3 nonprofits, so you can become more informed and invest your support in charities that are making a significant impact and changing lives every day.