A note from Shane Burcaw, LAMN President and cofounder:
"The Tuesday after Thanksgiving is deemed Giving Tuesday, an
international day of philanthropy at the beginning of the holiday season.
For many charities, it is the most important day of the year.
One of the most profound moments from my 10+ years as a disabled author and advocate happened a few years ago. A 5th grade teacher had reached out to me, asking me to give one of my “Not So Different” presentations to his class. He shared that one of his new students lived with a disability similar to mine and he was hoping I could help the class become more welcoming. I agreed, but in the back of my mind I felt leery. I hate putting a particular student in the spotlight, especially without their consent. I told the teacher I’d give my regular presentation but avoid highlighting the new student unless they chose to engage with me during my visit.
The day arrived. I gave the presentation and it unfolded normally—I shared a bit about my life with the kids. We talked about living with a disability and I encouraged open discussion. The new student didn’t volunteer during the discussion, which was totally fine. I went through years of not wanting to draw attention to myself before becoming the ham that I am today!
The next day I had an interesting email in my inbox. It was from the new student. It read: “Your talk with my class gave me a new outlook on my wheelchair. It used to make me sad, but not anymore. I’ve decided I’m going to be an author too! Thank you!”
Wow. Sometimes I get a little numb to the work I’m able to do through to Laughing At My Nightmare, Inc. But this kid’s email grabbed me and shook me. It reminded me with force that the disability education we provide is not just a fluffy program for the non-disabled kids, but a truly life-changing experience for anyone when it finds the right ears.
I’m forever grateful for the work I get to do each day, and none of it would be possible without your support. This last fundraiser of the year is dedicated to that new student, and it will allow us to provide hundreds of similar presentations to classes across the country in the year ahead.
It would mean so much to me if you’d consider donating a dollar or two.
**DONATIONS OF ANY AMOUNT ON GIVING TUESDAY WILL RECEIVE A COMPLIMENTARY LINK TO "SHANE AND SARAH'S ANNUAL TOAST AND ROAST" AT 8PM ET!**
This year at LAMN, we sold 150 “#GivingTuesday Gala Boxes.” These boxes included curated items to be enjoyed during a night of fun at home on #GivingTuesday in honor of LAMN. Many items in this box have been purchased from disability-owned businesses in the US such as:
Cookies from Collettey's Cookies
Collette is a young woman living with down syndrome who opened her famous cookie business in 2015. She now has 15 employees, several with disabilities and is a disability advocate affecting positive change in the workforce for people living with disabilities.
Hot Sauce from Connor's Saucery with the secret recipe for Shane Burcaw's very own, Buffalo Chicken Dip
Connor (age 13) lives with a form of muscular dystrophy, has a STRONG love for hot sauce, and opened his famous saucery in 2018!
Tea from Cup of Te´
After an accident left former olympic gymnast, Taylor Lindsey-Noel a quadriplegic, she started a luxury tea brand called Cup of Te´. This brand not only has received star reviews from celebrities like Oprah, but a portion of her proceeds are donated towards mental health awareness causes!
Our Giving Tuesday LAMN logo was created by SMA advocate, Tyler Dykema. The feather represents togetherness and the acorns represent growth and tie in the fall season!
GIVING TUESDAY GALA BOX
"Find out how Biogen is pioneering neuroscience to transform lives and support their communities here!"