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Wilmington, DE – On Friday, February 27th, the Delaware HOSA, Future Health Professionals, joined forces with Nemours to celebrate National Rare Disease Day. The celebration took place in the Anthony N. Fusco, Sr. Atrium of the Alfred I duPont Hospital for Children. In addition to raising awareness of rare and chronic pediatric diseases, the students’ displays and presentations were judged by a group of distinguished judges from Nemours. The students also had the opportunity to meet with the family of a child with a rare disease, interview a Nemours researcher, and raise funds for rare disease research. Students from St. Georges Technical High School, Polytech High School, Howard High School, Hodgson Vocational Technical High school, Delcastle High school, Conrad School of Sciences, and Cape Henlopen High School along with their advisors prepared for since the beginning of the school year for the Rare Disease Day celebration. While the fundraising campaign remains active until March 27th, as of the day of the event the students raised over $4000 from this event that will be used for rare disease research.

HOSA-Future Health Professionals is a national student organization that provides a unique program of leadership development, motivation, and recognition exclusively for secondary, postsecondary, collegiate and adult students enrolled in health science education. The Delaware high school chapter of HOSA started in 2011 and has been working with Nemours since last summer on the Rare Disease Day celebration. “Rare Disease Day is a world-wide celebration that brings awareness to rare diseases. It has been a perfect partnership between Nemours and Delaware HOSA in getting HOSA students involved in raising awareness and learning about rare disease research. Delaware HOSA gives a special thank you to the physicians, researchers, healthcare professionals and families who participated in the event.” said the Delaware State Advisor for HOSA, Dr.Peg Enslen.

This year, 80 countries and regions worldwide have been involved in awareness-raising activities around the slogan day-by-day, hand-in-hand. Visit the Rare Disease website to read about the Nemours and Delaware HOSA partnership as well as many other celebrations around the world at http://www.rarediseaseday.org/events/world.