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“Vitamin C vs. Measles”: A Sweet Drink Gives Children a Second Chance
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Rachel Kleinberg
 
October 15, 2008

While many of their classmates are enjoying extra games of tag on the weekends, Danielle (13), Haley (11), and Julia Flum (9), of Parkland, Florida decided to beat the heat and help fight Measles simultaneously. Charging $1 for an ice cold, refreshing glass of lemonade or ice tea at their lemonade stand, they have raised more than $375 for the Measles Initiative, so far.

Tabletop advertisement at Rookies Bar
Haley and Julia Flum (left and right), beside their lemonade stand, display their flyer and poster about the Measles Initiative.

An idea reborn
Julia once sold lemonade for fun in front of their house. In the sweltering summer heat of their home near Fort Lauderdale, Danielle thought it would be fun to do again, but with a twist: add another drink option, as well as candy, and donate the proceeds to the Measles Initiative!

"When people found out about the good cause the girls were supporting, they were often willing to give much more than the requested $1 per glass- sometimes, $5, $10, or more," noted Jeff Meltzer, the girls' father.

To help raise awareness, the girls created flyers with information about measles and painted a large, bright red cross on their lemonade stand to attract attention. The youngest daughter, Julia, neighborhood renown for her powerful lungs, took responsibility for vocalizing their cause and attracting customers, even from passing cars. News of their lemonade stand is continuing to spread and they have even received pledges from people who are too far away to try a glass of lemonade or iced tea.

Reflections
Danielle, Haley, and Julia's simple, successful formula is helping to sweeten the sour deal dealt to children where measles is still a life threatening disease, such as in India. More poignant is the fact that the children they are helping immunize around the world are the same age as them.

"Realizing the lives that they can save, the girls plan to continue working at their lemonade stand over a few more weekends,"said their mother Lisa.

Though still too young to start a Red Cross youth club, they have not let their age stop them from improving the lives of others. Providing inspiration to volunteers of all ages, Danielle, Haley, and Julia demonstrate that you are never too young or too old to make a difference in the world.

The Measles Initiative is a partnership committed to reducing measles deaths globally. Launched in 2001, the Measles Initiative-led by the American Red Cross, the United Nations Foundation, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, UNICEF and the World Health Organization - provides technical and financial support to governments and communities on vaccination campaigns worldwide. To learn more or make a donation, visit www.measlesinitiative.org.



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