My first birthday cake was a “breast milk” birthday cake because I was severely allergic to dairy and soy. I understand how 15 million Americans suffering from food allergies feel because I am one of them. —Calli, Founder, Crowning Purpose, Inc.
Food allergy education is key to increase awareness. This awareness will help to end food allergy bullying in our schools. Calli has developed a national partnership with FARE and utilized their campaigns in addition to writing her own children's book to maximize her impact on the issue of food allergies. She has raised over $8,000 for this advocacy platform and has also lobbied for food allergy legislation in North Carolina and beyond.
— NATIONAL PARTNERSHIP —
FARE (Food Allergy Research & Education) is a national organization that works on behalf of the 15 million Americans with food allergies, including all those at risk for life-threatening anaphylaxis. This potentially deadly disease affects 1 in 13 children in the United States – or roughly two in every classroom. Calli has participated extensively in FARE's campaigns, raised significant funds for research and has even served as a keynote speaker at the 2016 FARE National Conference.
— CAMPAIGNS —
The Teal Pumpkin Project raises awareness of food allergies and promotes inclusion of all trick-or-treaters throughout the Halloween season. Calli collects non-allergic treats as well as donations for food allergy research during the month of October.
The It’s Not a Joke campaign is a PSA focusing on anti-bullying, as one in three kids with food allergies are bullied.
— LEGISLATION —
In addition to raising funds and creating awareness, Calli introduced NC House Bill 520 into legislation via local representatives. If passed, North Carolina would join Virginia and Rhode Island in requiring restaurants to undergo food allergy training to help protect their patrons. In addition to this bill, Calli is working with the food industry to host food allergy training events to help prevent problems such as cross contamination.
— CHILDREN'S BOOK —
In 2014, Calli wrote, illustrated and self-published the book "The Anteater That Couldn’t Eat Ants." The book is used as a teaching tool in schools. Through the “One to One Hundred” campaign, Calli reached her goal of donating a copy of the book to at least one library in every county of North Carolina! In addition to every county in North Carolina, "The Anteater That Couldn’t Eat Ants" is in 12 states and 16 countries. Net proceeds from sales go to FARE for food allergy research and anti-bulling education.