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Phelan Lucky in 50 States and Internationally

By Jen Randolph

Our family is feelin' really lucky.

We set out to sell a few T-shirts for a local St. Patrick's Day event and it quickly caused a national stir in the special needs community.

The shirts were intended to raise awareness for the Phelan-McDermid Syndrome Foundation and also raise some money. We thought it would be a cute idea if we all wore matching T-shirts Saturday, March 15, for the St. Patrick's Day Loop in Wilmington, Del., and also have a cute shirt for the kids to wear to school on St. Patrick's Day, March 17.

After brainstorming, we came up with the idea of the phrase PHELAN LUCKY, which seemed quite appropriate given our gratitude toward the Foundation for all that they do for our family, the upcoming holiday and of course, Dr. Katy Phelan's love of the Boston Celtics.
Dr. Katy Phelan and her Phelan Lucky T-shirt, worn in Louisiana.

At first the idea was simple, sell a couple of shirts to our friends and family and make a couple hundred dollars while we were at it. However, the shirts, designed by our good friend Andy Cruz at House Industries, proved to be a hot commodity. Locally, our friends and family thought they were great so I put it on Facebook. It kind of exploded after that.

At the end of our three-week campaign on booster.com we sold 488 shirts, got at least one shirt in each of the 50 states (four made it to Shanghai, China), and raised $10,950.00 for the foundation. As time was running out on the campaign we still did not have anyone buying the shirts in six states. So, my father's friend kicked in to help. He cold-called families in those states and found people to buy the shirts so that we would meet our goal of making sure at least one person had a PHELAN LUCKY shirt in every state! Thank you so much!

Today, I am still receiving requests to order the shirts. Unfortunately, the campaign is over, but due to the high demand, I feel confident that Jack's PHELAN LUCKY campaign will become an annual fundraiser.

Thank you to all of the families who supported us by buying shirts and sharing with your circle of friends. For those of you who missed out, I promise to remind you next year.
The Randolphs are certainly PHELAN LUCKY to be associated with such an incredible group!

Nick Assendelft contributed to this story.


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Mission Accomplished 2013 – Challenge Accepted 2014!

On behalf of the PMSF Board of Directors we want to thank EVERYONE that contributed in 2013 to help us exceed our projected income goal. As a matter of fact, we “blew the top off” the thermometer. The goal was $277,000. We raised $472,115! A significant portion of the funds raised came from the Giving Challenge last year. We had no idea what to expect given it was our first year to participate and the $145,000 from the Challenge (which consisted of $90,000 in contributions and $55,000 in matching gifts, grants and awards) was a huge surprise. We raised THE MOST out of 285 non-profits. A total of 678 contributions were made to PMSF from 40 different states and 15 countries.

This year’s Giving Challenge goal to surpass the $90,000 contributed directly from PMSF families and their generous networks is a lofty goal. However, we believe it is entirely possible. There’s no doubt we have a lot of families and friends of PMSF that are passionate about helping. And, the Giving Challenge gives contributors a chance to have their donation multiplied by a matching gift, grant or award. It is paramount that EVERYONE contributes what they can in 2014 so we can advance our understanding of Phelan-McDermid Syndrome and potentially unlock some of the mysteries of Autism.

Learn more about the 2014 Giving Challenge by clicking on this link >>> (http://www.22q13.org/j15/images/stories/fundraisers/pdf/22flyer_pmsf.pdf).

If you are here learning more about Phelan-McDermid Syndrome and considering a donation I encourage you to take a peek at the following link.  It’s an on-line brochure with details about our research efforts > http://share.snacktools.com/FC7FB7BA9F7/fu5arsfm.  We’re embracing today and empowering tomorrow!

Please gear up for this year’s Giving Challenge May 6th and 7th. Do what you can to help that “special someone” you know affected by Phelan-McDermid Syndrome.


Kurt Koester – Kylie’s Dad

Urbandale, Iowa
Director/Fundraising Committee Chair

Phelan-McDermid Syndrome Foundation