This year, actress and singer Selena Gomez bravely used her voice to bring attention to the painful realities and the many invisible challenges of lupus. Selena was diagnosed with lupus five years ago and revealed in September that she underwent kidney transplant surgery over the summer after the autoimmune disease started attacking her kidneys. She was only weeks away from dialysis when her friend stepped up to donate her kidney.
While lupus can strike anyone at any time, 90% of the people living with lupus are female and 20% of lupus cases are diagnosed in children and teens. Kidney damage is one of the more common health problems caused by lupus. In adults who have lupus, as many as 5 out of 10 will have kidney sease. In children who have lupus, 8 of 10 will have kidney disease or lupus nephritis, the term used when lupus causes inflammation in your kidneys, making them unable to properly remove waste from your blood or control the amount of fluids in your body.
Anna Taylor is one of those children living with lupus nephritis and she is also bravely using her voice to bring attention to this disease.
Anna has found support, friendship and hope at the Lupus Foundation of America, Heartland Chapter’s Summer Jam Youth Retreat, a free summer camp for adolescent and teenage girls living with lupus. Our goal is to provide a safe and comfortable environment for girls to learn about their disease, develop effective coping skills, and participate in activities to maintain a healthy lifestyle while making new friends who share their health challenges. Camp activities include counseling sessionsconducted by a licensed professional counselor, low-impact exercises, and team building, along with traditional camp activities like crafts, canoeing, hayrides, campfires, and of course s'mores. 
Interest and participation in our camp continues to grow and that is why we need your help to support our Send a Girl to Camp Campaign. A tax-deductible donation of $240 will send one girl to camp for two days, $100 will fund a camper for one day, $50 will fund activities for a camper and $25 will fund a camper’s meal. Any amount you can give will help campers, like Anna, attend camp and connect to others who understand what they are going through.
You can positively impact the life of a girl living with lupus by making an annual gift today to send a girl to camp next summer. 
With gratitude,
Amy Ondr
President & CEO 
Become a Lupus Monthly Sustaining Partner and join our special community of monthly donors who play a key role in helping to sustain our youth retreat and the other vital programs and services provided by the Heartland Chapter and research to find the casue and cure for lupus.