#28 Days To FASDay – An easy FASDay Plan

AN EASY FASDay Plan
Yes! You and one friend can do something!

Easy Plan – The Foolproof FAS Day Formula
Sit down with paper and pen. If you have one or two other key people to work with, print up copies of this manual, and invite them to join you. Give them some time to read it, and then answer the following questions:

  • Who is chairing this event?
  • Who can we count on to help out?
  • What kind of help can they give us?
  • Who do we know will want to attend?
  • Potential attendees — what other people and organizations in the community do we want to reach? (Start with interested friends and family members, and professionals –doctors, lawyers, teachers, etc. – that you know. Then add people who should be interested: e.g., local municipal, state/provincial and federal politicians, agencies with an interest in FAS, school personnel, etc.)
  • How many people can we reasonably expect to attend?
  • Will we require child care?
  • Where should we hold this event?
  • Who are our best local media contacts to promote this event and the FAS issue?

1. Confirm location.
Once you’ve decided how many people are likely to attend, choose your location. Try to find a reasonably-sized meeting room with comfortable seating, and a convenient area to serve coffee, tea, juice, and snacks.
2. How to Obtain a FAS Day Proclamation
If you want civic and state FAS Day proclamations, find out the appropriate name to write to, and do this immediately. You’ll find a boiler-plate letter plus sample proclamations in this document. (Note: Canada’s provincial governments are not likely to issue proclamations.)
3. Planning the Video Premiere — Plus
The program is a simple one, but you’re going to need to make some choices.
Who will be M.C.? Choose the most articulate person in your group, or try for a local personality who could be sympathetic to your cause – e.g., a TV or radio broadcaster or local entertainment figure.

  • Will you use the Invocation, and if so, who will read it?
  • Will you ask your mayor or a municipal counsellor to read the Proclamation?
  • How will you observe the worldwide “Minute of Reflection” at 9:09 a.m.? e.g., will someone ring a bell nine times?
  • Or will you say a prayer, sing a song, have someone play a musical instrument, or have simple silence?
  • Will you have a keynote speaker following the video, and if so, who?
  • Or will you have a panel discussion? Your panel could include a birth parent, a foster or adoptive parent, an articulate survivor of FAS/FAE and a professional (teacher, doctor or nurse, psychologist or social worker, knowledgeable lawyer or judge, etc.)
  • Will you add music to the mix – possibly a live musician?
  • Would you like to close with the poem, “The Integrity of Hope,” by Michael Kami? And if so, who will read it?

4. Invitations and flyersWe’ve enclosed a sample invitation and 2 sample flyer/posters. Ask your committee members to come up with names of people to invite, and make a master list, which can be used in 2001. To save on postage, you may want to e-mail and fax many of your invitations, but make sure to follow up with a personal phone call. The invitation contains a RSVP: whose number will invitees call?
5. Breakfast Food and Drink
Easy does it. Muffins and/or bagels, cheese or cream cheese optional, possibly some cut-up melon or citrus fruit, coffee, tea and fruit juice, cream/milk and sugar. Possibly a local retailer or coffee shop may be willing to make a donation. If you’re tight for cash, possibly a local service club or church will help. Will you need storage or refrigeration or help setting up tables? Do you have enough electric coffeemakers?
6. Other equipment
Make sure your video equipment is adequate well in advance of Sept. 9.

  • Is your VCR working?
  • Is your TV set or monitor large enough for the size of group you expect?
  • If you’re expecting two dozen people or more, you may need two or more monitors hooked up to one VCR: this can be done easily with a splitter. Most audio-visual specialty stores can show you how it’s done.
  • If more people than you expect turn up, simply hold two screening sessions. One group snacks and chats while the other group watches the video. Then they trade places.
    Your alternative is to rent a video projector and screen from a company specializing in video display or presentation rentals. This will cost about $250-$300 per day, and you will need to darken the room. Some colleges and universities have this equipment in screening rooms.

7. Media RelationsYou’ll find a sample media release, ready for you to personalize with local information. Make a list of all of the members of the media you would like to reach, particularly those whom you know personally. You should also prepare a list of individuals who are knowledgeable about FAS, and willing to talk to the media. These might include participants on your panel – parents, people with FAS, and professionals. The media release can be faxed, but make sure you have a person who will make follow-up phone calls. You will also need a media contact for any members of the press, radio or TV who want to know more.
8. OtherBells and carillons around the world will be ringing nine times at 9:09 a.m. in the international Bell Concordance, to remind the world that during the nine months of pregnancy, a woman should not consume alcohol. If there is a church bell in your community, you may want to speak to the minister or priest, to ask if it is rung manually. If so, we suggest you photocopy the material from the FASworld Report regarding the Bell Concordance, or download and print it from the website http://www.come-over.to/FASDAY/manual.htm , and invite the church to join in. If you live in a city which is lucky enough to have a carillon, get the name of the carillonneur and do the same. Gerald Martindale, carillonneur at Toronto’s Metropolitan United Church geraldm@planeteer.com> is building on last year’s concert of international lullabies and would be pleased to share this with other international carillonneurs.

  • Make sure you have a guest book easily accessible as guests enter or leave. It would be useful to have someone stationed to remind people to sign the guest book and hand out FAS Knots as your guests arrive.
  • The FAS awareness symbol, the FAS Knot can be easily made for about 8 cents each. They can be given away, sold for about $2-3 each, or you can simply have a cash box available for donations. Complete information on the FAS Knot can be found at www.come-over.to/FASDAY/manual.htm
    FAS Knots and the guest book can be placed on an information table, with other available material. The table can also include petitions your group wishes to support.

For suggestions for both U.S. and Canadian petitions, e-mail Bonnie Buxton at ogrady@axxent.ca.
For suggestions on posters and printed material you can download yourself, check out the website
http://come-over.to/FASdisk/

#29 Days To FASDay – How to make a FAS Knot

TIE SOME FASKnotsand Pass Them Around Town or School

The FAS Knot – A Symbol for Our Time
We have been pleased by the enthusiasm that volunteers from New Zealand to Arctic Alaska and Canada’s northern territories of Yukon and Nunavut to South Africa have expressed for our unique, wearable symbol, the “FAS Knot.” Each FAS Knot can be easily made in about a minute, for less than ten cents, and can be used as a fund-raiser ($2-$5 each) or given away as reminders of the work we all do to help prevent FASD.
This piece of knotted cord was designed in memory of Abel Dorris, 1968-1991, whose brief and poignant life resulted in the groundbreaking 1989 book about Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, “The Broken Cord,” written by his father, Michael Dorris, 1945-1997.
The broken cord may refer to the umbilical cord, the spinal cord, the nervous system, the cord between the generations, or the cable on an elevator. Michael Dorris wrote that if we back off on our children with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome or Fetal Alcohol Effects (i.e. Alcohol-Related Neurodevelopmental Disorder), they will sink and crash like an elevator once the cable is snapped.
Years later, a loving community around the world reconnected the broken cord, and the FAS Knot is our symbol. The cord is tied in a square knot, sometimes called a reef knot, the favored knot for reconnecting a broken line or cord. The knot is stronger than the cord itself, and cannot be broken or snapped.
To make the FAS Knot, we suggest an eight-inch piece of 3/16″ white cord, available in most hardware stores for a few cents per foot. You make a circle approximately the size of your thumb, then tie right over left and under; left over right and under. It should look like two loops intertwined. (Volunteers in Germany and New Zealand use a thinner cord, and make a more discreet knot. The choice is up to you.)
By choosing a cord instead of a ribbon, we are separating ourselves from all of the other campaigns. We are not just another cause trying to raise money – we represent those millions of individuals and their families who have gone unrecognized, unidentified, neglected on this continent and throughout the world.
The circle symbolizes the womb, a baby’s head, the human brain, the earth. And we, a planet-size network of people who care about people living with FASD, are the knot that will make them whole. If women did not drink in pregnancy, FASD would be totally eliminated.
Our long-range goal is to rename this small piece of cord, “The FAS Not!”
The FAS Knot lapel pin is a more recent innovation and can also be used for fund raising. Many groups resell the pin for $5 or $6.
The pin is available for the low cost of C$3/pin for orders of 25 or more. Shipping is free for orders of 100 or more. The pin is white enamel with a faux gold edge and is approximately 1.8 cm wide. The FAS Knot lapel pin is a registered trademark of FASworld Canada. The lapel pin may not be replicated, copied or incorporated into any other design without specific written permission from FASworld Canada.
The original FAS Knot was designed by Bonnie Buxton and Brian Philcox, and is an official symbol of FASworld. You can find step-by-step photos above. We encourage groups supporting FASD endeavours to use it for promotion or fund-raising, and ask only that you notify us before doing so.

E-mail us at info@fasworld.comHow to Make a FAS Knot

THE FAS KNOT STORY

“A threefold cord is not quickly broken.”
–The Bible, Ecclesiastes IV, 10

In 1999, volunteers from New Zealand and South Africa to Nunavut used the FAS Knot as a symbol of our worldwide campaign to inform the world about Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and related disorders.
This piece of knotted cord was designed in memory of Abel Dorris, 1968-1991, whose brief and poignant life resulted in the groundbreaking 1989 book about Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, The Broken Cord, written by his father, Michael Dorris, 1945-1997.
The broken cord may refer to the umbilical cord, the spinal cord, the nervous system, the cord between the generations, or the cable on an elevator. Michael Dorris wrote that if we back off on our children with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome or Fetal Alcohol Effects, they will sink like an elevator once the cable is snapped. Ten years after Dorris’s book, a loving community around the world reconnected the broken cord, developing the FAS Knot as our symbol.
Each knot can be made easily and cheaply in less than a minute. The cord is tied in a square knot, sometimes called a reef knot, the favoured knot for reconnecting a broken line or cord. The knot is stronger than the cord itself, and cannot be broken or snapped. You may want to sell the knots for $2-$5, or ask for donations.
Volunteers in the U.S. and Canada generally use an eight-inch piece of 3/16″ white cord, available in most hardware stores for a few cents per foot. Volunteers in New Zealand and Germany have made smaller, more discreet FAS Knots, using thinner cord. Make a circle approximately the size of your thumb (possibly smaller if you use a thinner cord), then tie right over left and under; left over right and under. Using a straight pin or safety pin, pin this to your lapel or other garment with the loop above and the knot below.
Step-by-step photos of the FAS Knot may be seen on the website at www.come-over.to/FASDAY/manual.htm
We have chosen a cord instead of a ribbon, to separate ourselves from all of the other campaigns. We are not just another cause trying to raise money — we represent those millions of individuals and their families who have gone unrecognized, unidentified, neglected on this continent and throughout the world.
The circle symbolizes the womb, a baby’s head, the human brain, the earth. And we, a planet-size network of people who care about people living with FAS, are the knot that will make them whole. FAS is totally preventable. We must create a society in which everyone recognizes that there is no lower threshold for drinking in pregnancy. Our long-range goal is to rename this small piece of cord, “The FAS Not!”
The FAS Knot was designed by Bonnie Buxton and Brian Philcox, trademark pending.

Copy for FAS Knot Scroll (optional)
(You may want to print a one-page sheet, roll it up in a scroll, and tuck each one inside the loop of a FAS Knot. The sheet can contain information about the program, and also includes this information about the Knot.)

THE FAS KNOT
This piece of knotted cord was designed in memory of Abel Dorris, 1968-1991, whose brief and poignant life resulted in the groundbreaking 1989 book about Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, “The Broken Cord,” written by his father, Michael Dorris, 1945-1997.
The broken cord may refer to the umbilical cord, the spinal cord, the nervous system, the cord between the generations, or the cable on an elevator. Michael Dorris wrote that if we back off on our children with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome or Fetal Alcohol Effects, they will sink like an elevator once the cable is snapped.
The circle symbolizes the womb, a baby’s head, the human brain, the earth. And we, a planet-size network of people who care about people living with FAS, are the knot that will make them whole. FAS is totally preventable. We must create a society in which everyone recognizes that there is no lower threshold for drinking in pregnancy. Our long-range goal is to rename this small piece of cord, “The FAS Not!”

#35 Days To FASDay – Invocation


FASDay Invocation & Poem

(This beautiful and inclusive prayer was written and delivered by Sister Eileen Power at the Toronto observance, and has been updated. It’s freely available for anyone in the world who wants to use it. If you use it, please credit Sister Eileen Power, and mention that she is a teaching sister of the Congregation of Notre Dame in Toronto.)

by Sr. Eileen Power, CND

O Great Spirit, Creator of the Universe, we gather on the ninth minute of the ninth hour of the ninth day of the ninth month in the (first year of the New Millennium).
Our connection with our whole world is made visible in a special way today.
People in every time zone gather, as we gather, to change our world.
By our coming together and our working together, we will make the world better.
Accept our prayers with all who are praising you this very moment and with all who will gather today.
As we begin (this millennium), we are filled with hope,
O Ever-Creating God,
that in the circle of life,
in the cosmos, in the womb,
in our hearts,
your hope goes round,
your strength goes round,
your power goes round,
your love goes round and
our hearts and spirits are joined in a new birth.

We gather to intensify our awareness of the fragile beauty of life from the first moment of conception, of the privilege of the nine months of pregnancy, and of our resolve to help all children and adults with fetal substance disorders to lead happier and more fulfilling lives.

All of our words, gestures and hopes of today:
Our silence and our bells,
Our dance and our reflection,
Our words and our drums,
Our children and our knots,
Our lullabies and our resolve,
All of our words, gestures and hopes of today,
Are powerful reminders that life is your gift to us.
May the drumming of our hearts, echoing the drum of the heartbeat of the universe, be the sound of your tender love.
May the knot of our connections be ever firm. And may this special moment on this special day continue to mark the beginning of change, for mothers, for fathers, for all children and for those yet-to-be, and for all of us who join in spirit today around this unique planet, so beautiful, so fragile, so large and yet so small. Together, we are family.

“The Integrity of Hope” (optional)
This is a warm and positive way to end your event, particularly if it is read by a birth mother or person living with FASDs.

The Integrity of Hope
by Michael Kami, 1993

Just as the gentle flutter of a butterfly’s wing
Can change the path of a hurricane
So the gentle beat of a child’s heart
Can change the destiny of the world.
Children are our future and our hope.
Only they determine humanity’s progress.
We must protect all children.
We must feed all children.
We must educate all children.
We must love all children.
They are we and we are they,
In a joint journey to a better future!

#41 Days To FASDay – Gear Up – Recap Ideas


Make a social difference that will impact millions –
help support friends and family members who are pregnant to help
“Build Better Baby Brains” for the future.

September 9

Read Book One before
Book Two – Tiger Butterfly is
released in September 2012


Need gear for your event: 

7 FREE Themes to Build Your Event! 

Simply pick a theme and go – you can get shirts, mugs, stickers, buttons and if you don’t see it let me know and I can make it available.

  1. Each One Reach One Campaign
  2. Be a Life Saver Million Mind March
  3. Raise the Standard – Building Better Baby Brains
  4. Think. before you drink. 
  5. Free Spirit
  6. Trail Markers
  7. Life Braids

Step up to raise the standard. FASD is 100% preventable and lasts a lifetime.
Consider reading “The Whitest Wall” to learn more about the realities of FASD. Book Two – Tiger Butterfly to be released September 9 – share with your friends. Winner Mom’s Choice Gold Best Adult Fiction and Best Young Adult Fiction. High School Curriculum and Discussion available.

To learn more visit:
Million Mind March 09.09 Website

Follow SILENT VOICES
#60 Days of Ideas to Countdown to FASDay Celebrations

Let me know if you choose to do something and we will post it to our international site at http://www.fasday.com/

#52 Days To FASDay – Get the Current Research

GET YOUR FREE FASD
APP FROM CDC –
IT’S GREAT TO HAVE 
ALL THE DETAILS
AT YOUR FINGER TIPS

Stay on top of current statistics and research! 

Provide media interviews and reporters with the newest data.

Thank you for being a part of our Million Mind March to Build Better Baby Brains. The following letter was received by Better Endings New Beginnings – July 19, 2012 – We are offering you an early view today of the report. We appreciate everyone’s efforts. 

Dear Partners,
We would like to share with you findings that were published today in CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR). The report*, Alcohol use and binge drinking among women of childbearing age – United States, 2006-2010, describes findings from CDC’s Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) examining any alcohol use and binge drinking among pregnant and nonpregnant women of childbearing age (18-44 years) in the U.S. from 2006 to 2010. The main findings from these data analyses are:
·         7.6% of pregnant women (or 1 in 13) and 51.5% of nonpregnant women (or 1 in 2) reported drinking alcohol in the past 30 days.
·         Among pregnant women, the highest estimates of reported alcohol use were among those who were:
o   Aged 35-44 years (14.3%);
o   White (8.3%);
o   College graduates (10.0%);
o   Employed (9.6%)
·         1.4% of pregnant women (or 1 in 71) and 15.0% of nonpregnant women (or 1 in 7) reported binge drinking in the past 30 days. (Binge drinking was defined as having consumed four or more drinks on an occasion at least one time in the past 30 days.)
·         Among binge drinkers, the average frequency and intensity of binge episodes were similar, about three times per month and approximately six drinks on an occasion, among those who were pregnant and those who were not.
·         Among nonpregnant binge drinkers, binge drinking prevalence, frequency, and intensity were highest among those aged 18-24 years.
Alcohol consumption (any use and binge drinking) among pregnant women is still an important public health concern. Pregnant and nonpregnant women of childbearing age who misuse alcohol are an important population for public health interventions. This report helps identify the population of women who engage in risky drinking behaviors and can help target interventions to prevent alcohol-exposed pregnancies.
Because no safe level of alcohol during pregnancy has been established and alcohol is known to cause birth defects, developmental disabilities, and other adverse pregnancy outcomes, women who are pregnant or who might become pregnant should refrain from drinking alcohol. We know that FASDs are 100% preventable if alcohol is not consumed during pregnancy, so why take the risk?
*Reported by: Claire M. Marchetta, MPH, Clark H. Denny, PhD, R. Louise Floyd, DSN, Nancy E. Cheal, PhD, Joseph E. Sniezek, MD. Division of Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities; Lela R. McKnight-Eily, PhD, Division of Population Health, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, CDC

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Prevention Team
National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
www.cdc.gov/fasd



Online Manual – www.fasday.com
Seminar – Or try our easy, effective, exciting 1½ hour program that walks you
 through the morning of Sept.9: http://www.come-over.to/FASDAY/ABCDEFG/ 
(material from 2002 has excellent ideas)


Follow us through the next 60 days and plan your local or personal project to build awareness of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder – Each One Can Reach One!

Need family support visit www.toolboxparent.com
Need ideas for adults living with challenges of FASD visit www.braidedcord.net
Need information on fetal alcohol spectrum disorders visit www.betterendings.org
Interested in service dog for FASD visit www.thechancerchronicles.com


The Million Mind March starts with a single step.

Daring to Live – He Won The Million Minds Race Without Ever Taking A Step

Jim Grimm never joined our Million Mind March, he died yesterday quietly in “his” home. He was 42 and he Dared to Live with Cerebral Palsy that captivated him to rejoice in a life few live so strongly. He never uttered a word, yet he profoundly and joyfully touched the lives of all who came to know him. He was an inspiration to all who met him.

Born with cerebral palsy and unable to communicate verbally or move of his own volition, Jim turned his severely isolating lifelong disability into a gift of connecting deeply with others. The community of Chisago Lakes rallied around the family while Jim was in preschool, little Jim went to school and graduated with his class in 1986. He was a friend to all. Independent and strong spirited, he moved into his “own” home as an adult and was surrounded by care givers who became his “Friends.” He climbed the first Liberty Ridge.

His Award Winning “The Heart’s Alphabet – Daring to live with Cerebral Palsy.” Won National Mom’s Choice Gold Award for Adult Memoirs. The Heart’s Alphabet is Jim’s self-told story, painstakingly spelled out, letter by letter, with the assistance of an interpreter is a tale of personal perseverance, a tribute to loving families, and-most of all-a testament to the possibilities that lie within each of us.

  • Jim ran the race of life wearing a wheelchair.
  • Jim taught life living independently hurdling barriers other placed before him.
  • Jim climbed Liberty Ridge – he scaled the impossible as a man
  • Jim spoke letter by letter with his tongue – his words and life live on in his book
  • Jim loved life, people, concerts, vacation, travel, sports & his dogs.

His dogs was how I was reunited with Jim last year. Jim was looking for a dog and he knew what “he” wanted. After visits with my large size puppies, he clicked with his tongue “No.” For Jim his No has always meant no, and his Yes has moved him forward. He never settled for I Can’t. For Jim has always been able to work with his family, love with his family, and do with his family and the community he became a part of – He expressed his needs – as a child and as a wholesome and loving man.

His parents, his sister and brother and the community he embraced can rejoice in a life lived with courage and strength. He won the race, he finished his life and I am sure on both feet this man raced into heaven – his job well done! For Jim death was his first step – and knowing him his body free he can now run and jump at last.

“If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
If I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me.
Your right hand will hold me fast.”
Psalm 139:9

His website is http://theheartsalphabet.com/

May his family be blessed in their remembrances.