- sickle cell anemia / sick•le sel a•ne•mi•a / noun
An inherited blood disorder that mainly affects people of Afro-Caribbean origin and some people from the Mediterranean region, Arabia and Asia. It’s estimated that there are some 12,000 people with the condition in the UK – of which 1 in 4 are West African, 1 in 10 are Afro-Caribbean, 1 in 50 are Asian and 1 in 100 are Northern Greek. In the United States, 1 in 500 African-American newborns has the disease. The aim and mission is to raise awareness of the condition and encourage these communities to get screened.
Quest to Cure Sickle Cell Foundation was founded by Kristine Buchanan. Of her five young children, two of them, a set of identical twin boys, have the most severe form of sickle cell disease. The organization was created as a parent to parent support group designed to teach and promote self advocacy, which in turn would build a stronger, inclusive sickle cell community. Founder and Executive Director Kristine Buchanan believes strongly in Gandhi’s quote, “Be the change you want to see in the world.”
This quote became Kristine’s motto in 2003 when she moved to Arizona from a state that greatly assisted the sickle cell community with numerous programs and services. She spent most of her mornings searching via internet and endless phone calls looking for hematologists, support groups, and sickle cell clinics that assisted with the health care of individuals that suffered from sickle cell disease – but to no avail. Kristine then decided to become the change that she wanted to see for the sickle cell community in Arizona.
Since 2003, Kristine has been operating Quest to Cure with a mission to “Help Children Focus on Life, Not Pain” through unrivaled programs and services like the Summer Road Camp, Bedside Buddy and School Success.