1,679 Reasons You Should Know About the Shriners Organizations

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Founders of the World’s Greatest Philanthropy Come to Charlotte This July

"If this was my child, I would send him to the Shriners Hospitals for Children," said a nurse at the Winston facility. "They are much more advanced in burn care."

Many people do not know about the tremendous service of Shriners Hospitals for Children® in the community, but last year, 1,679 children from North Carolina were cared for by this health care system regardless of their families’ ability to pay. One of the 1,679 reasons is Jacob Keller of Hickory, N.C.

One evening in 2000, Steve and Lara Keller went to a friend’s house for dinner. Chicken was being prepared in a deep-fryer, which tipped over onto two-year-old Jacob causing third-degree burns to his chest and arms.

After three days in a burn center in Winston-Salem, the family received news that Jacob would not be able to receive the care he needed locally. “If this was my child, I would send him to the Shriners Hospitals for Children,” said a nurse at the Winston facility. “They are much more advanced in burn care.”

Coincidentally, Steve Keller’s uncle was in the process of becoming a Shriner. Keller made the call and within two hours Shriners Hospitals for Children had the family on a plane bound for Shriners Hospitals for Children-Cincinnati. Doctors there determined Jacob suffered third-degree burns to 35 percent of his body. He stayed in constant care for 28 days, had weekly check-ups for the following six months and in total has undergone 15 surgeries.

During the Kellers’ stay, Shriners Hospitals for Children provided counseling, accommodations and support. The Kellers received the much needed comprehensive medical care, which was not dependent on their ability to pay.

Shriners International founded and continues to support Shriners Hospitals for Children through fundraising programs, transportation services and donations. In fact, the Oasis Shriners in Charlotte, N.C. is one of 194 active and giving temples (chapters) within the fraternity.

From July 1 to 5, Shriners from around the world will gather at the Charlotte Convention Center for the 138th Imperial Session, where the new Imperial Potentate, the equivalent of a CEO for Shriners International, will be installed. Alan Madsen, of Cornelius, N.C., will become the 2012-2013 Imperial Potentate. His wife, Jan Madsen, will become First Lady and will announce her fundraising program for Shriners Hospitals for Children.

A special red carpet event will also take place during the Imperial Session on July 4 after the premiere of a video that will reveal the official patient ambassadors of Shriners Hospitals for Children for 2012-2013. This event, which is open to the public, will give people the opportunity to hear the success stories of two patients of Shriners Hospitals for Children.

About Shriners International
Shriners International is a fraternity based on fun, fellowship and the Masonic principles of brotherly love, relief and truth. There are approximately 310,000 members and 194 chapters throughout the world. For more information please visit http://www.shrinersinternational.org.

About Shriners Hospitals for Children
Shriners Hospitals for Children changes lives every day through innovative pediatric specialty care, world-class research and outstanding medical education. The 22 hospitals in the United States, Canada and Mexico provide advanced care for children with orthopaedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries, and cleft lip and palate. Shriners Hospitals for Children is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and relies on the generosity of donors. All donations are tax deductible to the fullest extent permitted by law. For more information please visit http://www.shrinershospitalsforchildren.org.

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Ann Ittoop
Lyerly Agency
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Fabiana Lowe
Shriners International
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