March 2015

Pfizer’s Soozie Courter Scholarship Program Turns 18!

I am honored to say I knew Soozie Courter: she was a “neighbor,” just living in the next town, and we one time shared a ride to the airport. A lovely, committed and intelligent woman, taken too soon. Below is a special annoucement by Pfizer, to benefit the community in the name of this wonderful woman. — Laurie

Pfizer Hemophilia is excited to
announce the 18th year of the Soozie Courter Scholarship program.
Named to honor a valued and respected friend of the hemophilia community, the
Soozie Courter scholarship is a tuition assistance program sponsored by Pfizer that
aims to help students advance their academic goals.
Scholarships are awarded to applicants
who present the best combination of a creative and persuasive essay, excellent
recommendations and superior academic standing. For the 2015-2016 academic year, Pfizer will
·       Five $4,000 graduate scholarships
·       Ten $2,500 college scholarships, including vocational
Bowles, 2014 Soozie Courter scholarship winner, is using the scholarship funds
he was awarded to help him obtain a Master of Public Affairs degree at Columbia
University in NYC and plans to eventually pursue a PhD in Business Policy. He
ultimately hopes to work with local state governments on policies to help
improve business development in the rural south. According to William, “coping with a genetic
disorder does not mean sacrificing commitments, dreams, or career aspirations.”
To be eligible for the scholarship,
students must have either hemophilia A or hemophilia B and be a high school
senior, have a high school diploma or general education development (GED)
credential, or be currently enrolled in an accredited junior college, college
(as an undergraduate or graduate student), or vocational school. All completed
applications must be postmarked or sent via e-mail no later than
May 20, 2015. To download an application, please visit here. To learn about the
inspiring stories of past winners, check out the Pfizer Facebook Page, Our Hemophilia Community.

The 18th
anniversary of the Soozie Courter scholarship illustrates the long standing
pledge by Pfizer to help patients with hemophilia further their education. To
learn more about other ways Pfizer is supporting the hemophilia community,
visit Hemophilia Village. From diagnosis to
dating, the newly refreshed site provides tips, resources, and words of wisdom
to help you navigate through the various challenges that arise throughout the

This is a paid announcement by Pfizer.

March’s Child

I remember the Boston Globe column called “Sunday’s Child,” which profiled a beautiful child every Sunday in the Boston area in need of a foster home, in the hopes it would end in adoption. Let’s call this week’s blog post “March’s Child.” We have children with hemophilia in need of sponsorship!

It’s March, Hemophilia Awareness Month, and yet there are children in developing countries who lie at the fringe of our community, unaware that it’s “their” month, poor, suffering, waiting for help. We do our best to provide factor to these children through Project SHARE. But did you know you can sponsor one of these children through our sponsorship program Save One Life?

Helping us promote our cause is the amazing Chris Bombardier, who just spent 3 weeks in the wilderness, summiting Carstenz Pyramid in Indonesia. Yup, he flew all the way there, and suffered up that enormous mountain (the highest in Oceana–a stand-in for continent Australia) and #5 on his Seven Summits Quest) to raise awareness for hemophilia in March and for Save One Life in particular. How is that for sacrifice and dedication?

Most of us don’t need to go to such an extreme, though Chris so kindly asked me to accompany him (I would have if I didn’t have so much hemophilia-related work going on right now). We can just sponsor a child at only $22 a month. We are trying to get a mere 31 children sponsored in March, one for each day. We’ve almost reached our goal! Just FIVE more! We even have their photos below. Please consider helping us reach our goals to help give them a better life! It’s Hemophilia Awareness Month: Thanks to those who have pledged sponsorship! We hope more blog readers will rally to help these deserving children; what better month to make a pledge than March?

You can read more about Chris’s amazing climb here!

Laurie Kelley, founder,
Save One Life

Add caption

Great Book I Just Read
Eiger Dreams: Ventures of Men and Mountains by Jon Krakauer

From the mountain-climbing author of Into Thin Air comes nine gripping and informative stories about historic mountain climbs and the intriguing people who climb them. He covers K2, Denali, Everest and the Nordwand (Eiger) interspersing modern day adventurists and alpinists with history of climbing for each mountain. Krakaeur is a great storyteller: no nonsense but infusing his stories with awe, respect and love of the mountains. He also includes his own struggles with each mountain while portraying others’ climbs. Four/five stars.

Summiting to Save Lives!

March is Hemophilia Awareness month! But you already knew that.
What you might not know is that a brave young Denver man with hemophilia is making

Chris climbing Denali (Mt. McKinley)
Chris Bombardier is doing something no one with hemophilia has ever done before: summiting Carstensz Pyramid in Indonesia.
Why this mountain? After all, the man lives in Denver, a mile-high city. (Yes, he has that to his advantage; lots of extra red blood cells to help with altitude). Carstensz Pyramid will be Chris’s fifth mountain in his goal is to become the first person with hemophilia to climb the highest peak on each continent, aka The Seven Summits.
Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa. Mt. Elbrus in Russia. Mt. Aconcagua in South America, and Mt. McKinley in the US: been there, done that for Chris.

This will be  his most technical climb yet–that means hard!  Carstensz Pyramid is the highest mountain in Oceania standing at 16,024 feet above sea level. The mountain is in a remote area of Papua, Indonesia and the climb will involve specialized skills such as rock climbing, rappelling, and a tyrolean traverse. Chris will end the climb with a 4-5 day trek through an isolated region of the Papua jungle.

And he asked me to come with him, mentioning there were a lot of leeches and snakes in those there “isolated regions.” I wanted to go, believe me. One day I will go with him (though we are now narrowed down to Antarctica and Mt. Everest. I have to remind him I am twice his age), if only to base camp.

Chris infusing on a mountain top!

Chris left Friday, March 6 and has just landed in Bali. He is psyched and raring to go!

You can follow him for the next three weeks on his blog:

Quick background: The Seven Summits Quest began when Chris traveled to Kenya on a work-related trip. While there, he witnessed the difficulties of those living with hemophilia in less developed regions of the world and decided he wanted to do anything he could to help. Chris declares, “Of course I look forward to standing on the summits of these incredible mountains and feeling the accomplishment of doing it with hemophilia. I want to show young people with hemophilia what’s possible. Our world is an amazing place, and I don’t want people with hemophilia to think they have to live in a bubble. I want them to get out and experience life to the fullest!” But, more importantly, Chris is committed to spreading the word about hemophilia and raising people’s awareness of the huge disparity in care that exists in the world.
And I add proudly that Chris is a board member of Save One Life, the nonprofit I founded in 2001 to help support the world’s poor with hemophilia. We have about 1,400 children and young adults

enrolled, who receive direct funding, scholarships, camp funding and microenterprise grants!

Deepak Das of India, whose leg was amputated last year due to an untreated bleed

And in March, Chris is going to dedicate each day to a child in need. Our goal is to get 35 more sponsored. They are waiting on our website:

Chris is taking risks at great expense to highlight the need of those in impoverished countries, where factor is limited or nonexistent. Please help support his climb by sponsoring a child today!

Want to be a Leader?

Leonardo di Vinci once wrote: Ask advice of him who governs himself well.

Learning to govern oneself is a principle of leadership, and can be taught and then honed. But not just through books. Often, the best leadership tenets are learned in real life. Bayer is offering a chance for young, potential leaders to govern themselves, test themselves and put their burgeoning leadership in action.

The Bayer Hemophilia Leadership Development Program is one of my favorite programs in our community. It’s a rare opportunity to be in the thick of decision-making, action and marketing. Read about it below, and apply at! Deadline is March 13!

Start shaping your future and your community!

Making a change in the world begins by making a change in your community! Apply to be an intern through the Bayer Hemophilia Leadership Development Program and begin to learn how to be the change YOU want to see in the world. Students enrolled full-time in college who are touched by hemophilia can apply now for the opportunity to: Engage in leadership training and hands-on business projects Learn how to support the hemophilia community as a potential future leader

Apply now for a six-week paid internship at Bayer HealthCare’s U.S. headquarters in New Jersey. In addition to working directly with leaders at Bayer, selected interns will:
Collaborate with local hemophilia organizations and learn about efforts to support the hemophilia community and partnerships with business professionals
Meet with healthcare public policy professionals to experience first-hand how effective advocacy relations impacts legislative decisions
Be responsible for developing a project that will be presented to Bayer Senior Management.

Learn more at

Great Book I Just Read

Take Yourself to the Top

Laura Fortrang

This is the perfect book for beginning leaders. A hard-hitting, direct and fun read about how to clarify your needs, set goals and remove obstacles to your goals. Fortrang is a life coach who shows us that without self-mastery, we will continue to be victims of our own biases, addictions, blaming mindsets, and circular thinking. A quick read, fun and impactful, you will start to make immediate changes after reading this! I’ve been reading this book for over 10 years every January to kick off the new year and get myself on track. It works! Four/five stars.

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