"This has brought many people together in a positive way." - Video Contestant Tara Smith
Las Vegas, NV (PRWEB) December 08, 2013
Sher Fertility Institute is undertaking a project to bring awareness and attention to the topic of infertility, which affects an estimated one million people in the U.S. In the process, they are hoping to make the dreams of two infertile couples come true by providing them with free In Vitro Fertilization treatment.
Dubbed the “I Believe Video Journal Project,” couples (and individuals) dealing with infertility issues were invited to submit a video detailing their struggles to conceive. Nearly 120 videos were submitted and posted on the Sher Fertility website (http://www.haveababy.com/believe-2013-videos).
The videos run the gamut from younger to older couples, from traditional couples to same sex couples to single women, from ordinary to extraordinary circumstances. Here is a small sampling of the video journals that were submitted:
- Kara Ginther was diagnosed and treated for leukemia at age 12 and again at age 16. She lost her ovaries and underwent a stem cell transplant with her younger sister as the donor. Her sister has volunteered to donate eggs for her IVF treatment. http://haveababy.com/ibelieve2013ginther/
- Nick and Tara Smith sold their house and their prize horses to finance fertility treatments, which was unsuccessful and resulted in severe medical complications. They are trying not to lose hope despite sacrificing so much with nothing to show for it. http://haveababy.com/ibelieve2013ntsmith/
- Frank and Katie Pedro lost their first baby late in Katie’s pregnancy. Ensuing fertility treatments resulted in twins that were delivered by emergency C-section at 25 weeks. They lost one of the twins after several weeks in the NICU. The other twin spent 12 weeks in the NICU before coming home to join their family. They are hoping for a sibling for their baby. http://haveababy.com/ibelieve2013pedro/
- Brandon and Megan Budge are both in the military and have been deployed to different areas of the Middle East several times during their marriage. Multiple rounds of fertility treatment have been unsuccessful for them and they long for children. http://haveababy.com/ibelieve2013budge/
“What is most striking about the videos we received is the aching desire of each of these couples to become parents,” said Geoffrey Sher, MD, founder and Executive Medical Director of Sher Institute. “Regardless of their circumstances, location, age, or background, they all feel the same deep longing. And that resonates with everyone who watches the videos.”
Many of the contestants have experienced unexpected feelings and responses to their videos. “I have been so overwhelmed with emotions ever since this contest opened,” wrote Tara Smith on the Sher Fertility Facebook page. “I can’t tell you how many people have messaged me telling me our story touched them…people who I knew but had no idea were experiencing fertility issues reached out to me. This has brought many people together in a positive way.”
Gretchen Brennison wrote,“I have been sharing my video with people all day who had no idea about our long struggle, and their reactions have brought me to tears.”
The 120 entries were narrowed down to a group of 15 finalists by a combination of public vote and input from a panel comprised of Sher Institute staff members. The winners will be chosen by an independent panel of judges and announced on December 20, 2013.
All of those who entered the contest will receive a free consult at any Sher Institute location.
About Sher Fertility Institute
Sher Fertility Institute is a nationwide network of fertility clinics founded by Geoffrey Sher, MD, who founded the nation's first private IVF clinic in 1983. The Institute draws patients from around the world to their eight locations throughout the United States. Through their "Giving Back" initiative, Sher Fertility Institute has donated more than 50 IVF treatments to deserving patients through participation with non-profit organizations, donations at their regional seminars, and their annual video journal project. More information is available at their website: http://www.haveababy.com