Sunday, February 10, 2013

From Penn Station to Pennsylvania Avenue

I am currently aboard the Amtrak train 157 to Washington D.C, and it’s a great time to ask and respond to a very important question. Why am I, a pediatric nurse from Long Island, heading to America’s Capital? The answer-  #GlobalVax. It’s the theme of this year’s Shot@Life’s Champion Summit, which I am honored to have been selected to attend with other dedicated and enthusiastic vaccine professionals. One hundred Champions have been given the unique opportunity to meet up in America’s capital to learn from leaders of top global health organizations, work together to cultivate ideas to promote immunization, and enjoy the company of other evidence-based child health activists. Although this trip required leaving my incredible husband and four amazing children for four days, the amount of progress my fellow champions and I will accomplish when we visit Capital Hill, the education we will receive from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the information that will be relayed to us by the UN Foundation and Every Child by Two/Vaccinate Your Baby will be an invaluable, worthy, and extraordinary experience.
Before I left, I explained to my oldest why I was traveling to Washington, and what I hope to accomplish. After listening to the planned agenda, seeing other Champions detailing their overseas advocacy, and hearing the heartbreaking stories about vaccine-preventable diseases, he turned to me and simply said, “I’ll miss you, but you have a lot of work to do to help those other kids.”

Yes, yes we do.

Check out #Vaximpact @
Follow Melody on Twitter (@MelodyButler) & (@nurseswhovax) for updates on the Shot@Life Summit in Washington, D.C. and to send questions and comments.

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