Sickle Cell Awareness Day 2023

Scott with members of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Incorporate and Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Incorporated

By Tricia Hall
The Truth Reporter

Several organizations gathered to raise awareness and share information in recognition of World Sickle Cell Awareness Day on Thursday, June 15, 2023 at the Mott Branch Library.

The event organizer, LaShardae Scott, founder of the Scott Center for Observation Treatment and Transition (SCOTT), wants to build community awareness. “There are people here with sickle cell and those that are here to just show support. It’s important that we build awareness for sickle cell disease.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, sickle cell disease is a red blood cell disorder and the hemoglobin is abnormal – sickle shaped – and can clog the blood flow. This can cause pain and other health complications such as stroke, infections and chest syndrome.

LaShardae Scott with husband Eric and their four sons

“We’re grateful for everyone who came out to support us and raise awareness of this rare disease,” explained Eric Scott, LaShardae’s husband, who’s affiliated with SCOTT and father of sons with sickle cell.

In order to build awareness, attendees were asked to create posters that displayed facts and dispelled Sickle Cell myths.

One attendee, Bobby Parker, known as a sickle cell warrior, shared his story about his journey with the disease. He was initially raised by a single mother, but both of his biological parents had sickle cell and he was eventually adopted. “My mother told me at age seven what I had. I spent so much time in and out of the Children’s Hospital and I just hurt so much. Twenty years ago, I could bend both of my legs and now I can’t.”

The event was supported by Neighborhood Health Association, Scott Center for Observation Treatment and Transition (SCOTT), Ohio Sickle Cell and Heath Association, Sickle Cell Project of Northwest Ohio and the local chapters of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Incorporated and Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Incorporated.