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PostPosted: Thu May 15, 2014 2:46 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6616
Location: Ottawa
I went to the Anaphylaxis Canada's 7TH Annual Conference last weekend and I was inspired to push for more awareness and understanding in Middle/High Schools. From my experiences in the past, I have found that schools are reluctant to embrace programs from outside of the school board unless the board has given it's blessing.

I sent this email to my daughter's school board on yesterday and received a reply that evening! :swing <--this little guy means I'm just warming up!


We are currently in Food Allergy and Celiac Awareness Month. In 2004, we estimated 600,000 Canadians had food allergies. Just 10 years later, the numbers have jumped significantly. Currently, food allergies affect approximately 2.5 million Canadians and about 300,000 Canadian children under 18 years have food allergies.

Research is looking into the cause and a possible treatment for severe (anaphylaxis) food allergies but there is much that we still don't know. What we do know is that allergies are on the rise. Children are developing anaphylaxis to more foods and they are not outgrowing them as they did in the past.

Sabrina's Law bill 3 was named after Sabrina Shannon who, at the age of 13, died from an anaphylaxis reaction to milk while at her high school. One of the requirements under this law is that schools have, "A communication plan for the dissemination of information on life-threatening allergies to parents, pupils and employees."

I think the school board is doing a good job, of training their staff, but more can be done to inform students and parents. Currently, to my knowledge, there is a statement sent home in school newsletters.

According to CSACI's Allergy Safe Communities, "Studies show that the majority of victims of fatal anaphylaxis were often older children, teens and young adults, many of whom had a history of anaphylaxis and were also asthmatic." We need to help these students to transition from elementary school to young adults and support them through this process. ... ylaxis.pdf

Anaphylaxis Canada has a program to raise Food Allergy Awareness in High Schools. It is offered through the WhyRiskIt website and is run by the Youth Advisory Panel (YAP).

The website and other youth programs have been created with Anaphylaxis Canada's Youth Advisory Panel (YAP), a group of more that 30 allergic teenagers and young adults from across Canada, ranging in age from 13-25 years old. YAO's mandate is to draw on the experiences and knowledge of it's members, in order to develop and deliver education, awareness and support programs for youth at risk of anaphylaxis.

I would like to see this offered in my daughter's school, --- High School and I want to bring it to the attention of the principal. I would like your opinion first.

Please let me know your thoughts on this program.

This was the Superintendent's reply:


Yes, you are certainly welcome to bring the program to the attention of the principal of ---. I will also share the link to the program with our board's Student Success Department, which is responsible for curriculum. I will share it with Ms. C, who is the
Coordinator of Intermediate-Secondary Student Success.

Daughter: asthma, allergies to egg, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, most legumes (not soy and green beans) & penicillin. Developing hayfever type allergies.
Husband: no allergies
Me: Oral Allergy Syndrome, Allergic to Birch trees

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