Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Eating Disorders Coalition takes on Miss America as spokesperson!

What gets the attention of Congress? Passionate personal stories, and the simple courage of citizens who step forward to tell them.

The EDC has a rare opportunity to bring a particularly high-profile story to Congress that represents everything we stand for: awareness, hope, the courage to speak out, and the message of urgency to pass legislation on eating disorders.

Kirsten Haglund, Miss America 2008, made headlines recently when she stepped forward to choose eating disorders awareness as her personal platform. EDC is honored to announce that Kirsten will lend her visibility as Miss America and her personal story to the April 9 launch of the Federal Response to Eliminate Eating Disorders Act (FREED Act).

EDC believes the time has come for a comprehensive approach to fighting eating disorders and with guidance from you and hundreds of others in the field, the EDC and members of Congress have crafted the FREED Act. The FREED Act represents a legislative answer to a long-overdue question: how to promote research, treatment, and education and prevention programs on a national level.

FREED will mean Centers of Excellence for research, enforce insurance reimbursement, and establish prevention and education opportunities in schools and for health care professionals

The FREED Act, to us, is a star – but a high-profile public figure like Ms. Haglund can help us draw attention to the issues and offer added energy to a Lobby Day that will send many personal stories into the offices of our lawmakers to get the FREED Act into the public eye. We know, and lawmakers know, that each story represents many others. Each story is a testament to the suffering and stigma this illness can cause – and the hope and dignity of each person who fights back.

Miss America, whose responsibilities this year are daunting and not entirely under her control, has arranged for her normal speaking fee to be completely waived for this appearance and her organization has allowed her to stay in Washington for both days of events. She wants to help EDC, and she also wants to be part of the movement to improve eating disorder treatment and outcomes.

Please help us bring Miss America to Washington so she can magnify the impact of all the wonderful Lobby Day participants who will share their personal messages to our policy makers.

Gail Schoenbach from the FREED Foundation has led the way for us by generously donating the cost of Ms. Haglund’s hotel in DC. We need additional sponsors for the following:

· An evening reception to honor our lobbyists and welcome Miss America: $3OOO - $4000

· Transportation to Washington, D.C.: $1500

· Transfers for Miss America during events: $500

· A donation in any amount is greatly appreciated and will help us bring Miss America to our nation’s Capitol.

(As a special incentive, donors who contribute $2500 or more will be invited to a special dinner with Kirsten and EDC leaders on Thursday evening, April 10th.)

EDC is proud to welcome Ms. Haglund as a lobbyist. Her schedule is busy, but she chose EDC as the organization with the reputation and the reach to raise eating disorder awareness on Capitol Hill in a way that truly matters. We need your help!

Please send your contribution to:

Eating Disorders Coalition

611 Pennsylvania Ave. SE #423

Washington, DC 20003-4303

If you have questions call Mar Lerro (202-543-9570) or Kitty Westin (952-240-5761)

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