My weekly posts are usually to share a product review with you, but today I am sharing a cause very close to my heart. A couple years ago I was asked to be on the board of directors for a non-profit that raises funds and awareness for a disease called Mitochondrial Disease. Mitochondrial Disease, also known as Mito, is often called "the invisible disease". There are potentially many different symptoms and not every person will exhibit every one.
1 in 4,000 children will develop a Mitochondrial Disease by age 10. 1 in 4,000 equals 1 child born every 30 minutes who will have Mitochondrial Disease. I often think of how fast a half hour can go by. There is no cure for Mito. Many have not even heard of this disease which means less promotion, awareness and funding for research.
Mitochondria are tiny organelles found in almost every cell in the body and are responsible for producing over 90% of our bodies’ needed cellular energy. They are known as the "powerhouse of the cell.” When the mitochondria fail, less and less energy is generated within our cells. Cell injury and even cell death can occur. As this process repeats throughout the body, whole systems begin to fail.
In adults, many diseases of aging have been found to have defects of mitochondrial function. These include, but are not limited to, type 2 diabetes, Parkinson's disease, atherosclerotic heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer's disease, and cancer. In addition, many medicines can injure the mitochondria.
Payton is the poster child for a non-profit called Payton’s Race for a Cure. She was diagnosed with Mitochondrial Disease when she was 18 months old. Now 6 years old, Payton is unable to walk or talk. Payton is 1 in 4,000... Most will tell you she is 1 in a million! Her face lights up a room and her giggles will melt your heart. She, and the many other children with Mito, are the reason this event has become such a passion for Michelle, myself, family, friends and everyone else that has volunteered, sponsored or attended this event.
Michelle Dewitt is our HR Generalist here at Lydia’s, and she is Payton’s mother. Three years ago Michelle decided to host the first motocross fundraiser; this weekend will be the 3rd annual Payton’s Race for a Cure’s Charity Motocross Event. We are very pleased to announce that the first 2 years we were able to raise a combined total of $20,000.00, and we expect Saturday’s event to be even bigger than previous years!
All of the proceeds are donated directly to the Mitochondrial Community through two organizations, Mito Action and the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation (UMDF). Both Mito Action and UMDF are non-profit organizations that share the common mission of furthering awareness and research for Mitochondrial Disease.
Many of Lydia's Uniform's employees have been touched by Michelle and Payton's story and will be volunteering at this weekend's event! Help us "leave Mito in the dust" by:
Have you heard of Mito or do you have a friend or family member that has been affected by this disease? We would love to hear your story.