Juvenile Arthritis: The Journey to Raise Awareness for Sophia

In this week’s episode of The UpBeat Podcast powered by CoachArt, our Executive Director and host Greg is joined by Joel Rothman and Laura Schultz, longtime friends of CoachArt in Los Angeles.

One of the most amazing aspects of our CoachArt families is their tireless willingness to give back and help others. We’re constantly inspired by the parents and children who have made the commitment to support similar families in need, even while they themselves undertake the difficult challenge of fighting chronic illness.

Listen to Joel & Laura’s Interview

Sophia, Joel and Laura’s daughter, was diagnosed with juvenile arthritis (an auto-immune disease) and uveitis (a disease that produces eye inflammation) at the age of 2. Children’s arthritis is typically more severe than other forms of the illness, but since children make up a small percentage of overall arthritis patients, Joel and Laura found their daughter’s new community underserved.

So Joel and Lisa decided to create the Juvenile Arthritis Association. Eleven years later, Sophia and the JAA are both thriving.

Joel and Laura discuss their journey from parents of a newly diagnosed daughter to leaders of an important youth advocacy organization “formed to address the enormous lack of awareness, funding, and resources going to children and young adults diagnosed with pediatric rheumatic diseases.”

Do you know other children with juvenile arthritis? Have some questions? Head on over to The UpBeat private Facebook group!

If you have a child who may qualify for CoachArt programs, visit: CoachArt.org

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