Do You Believe?
By Tina Thompson Somebody was mowing a lawn. Finn hurried down the sidewalk searching for the source of the unmistakable sound. I followed, a few paces behind. Halfway down the block, he stopped. Whoever was mowing was in the backyard and completely hidden from view. Finn anxiously paced back and forth in front of the driveway, even standing on his tip-toes to get a glimpse of the lawnmower. I followed his gaze up the driveway, and couldn’t help but smile. Something other than the lawnmower had caught my eye. Right there, stuck in the plants next to the porch was a bright orange Vivint security sign. A year and a half ago, I had never even heard of Vivint. Now, my neighbors were installing Vivint security systems and seeing that logo evoked a flood of emotions. Hope. Dreams. Camaraderie. Pride. Passion. Victory. Oh yes, the summer of 2011, how sweet it was. A real Cinderella story: FAST, a little known organization, fighting for those with Angelman syndrome, a little known disorder, managed to beat out over a hundred other charities in a Facebook voting competition to win the $250,000 grand prize in the Vivint Gives Back Project. It is an emotional time in the world of Angelman syndrome. As I write this, 24 families are taking turns traveling to Tampa, Florida to participate in a clinical trial funded with the Vivint winnings. It is a time of promise, but also of uncertainty. The research is more compelling than it has ever been. The fundraising opportunities continue to increase. We have come a long way. There is much to be hopeful for. But we still have a long way to go and we certainly haven’t come this far to stop now. This month, FAST has a chance to win another $250,000 in the Chase Community Giving Project. Can we do it again? Can we win another contest? Our community is remarkable, passionate and strong. Can we repeat the magic of the summer of 2011? Personally, I think that was just the beginning of the journey. Magic summer? No thank you. Welcome to the magic decade. Who is with me? I believe!