First, I will apologize for my absence. I’ve moved a couple times and my time has been taken up with new jobs (yes, plural) and a lot of volunteer work. The latter is the point of this post.

Over a year ago, when I started my blog and Twitter feed, I felt like there wasn’t a lot of made-in-Canada information for people with food allergies and atopic conditions. That was a major reason why I started this. Happily, I realized I was wrong. There are great organizations like Anaphylaxis Canada, the Asthma Society and more.

About a year ago, I found out about another social profit organization – The Eczema Society of Canada. I signed up for the newsletter and when the Executive Director, Amanda Cresswell-Melville, put out a call through the newsletters for support volunteers, I signed up. It felt right and I was ready to do more.

So, in March I became a support volunteer. I’ve also had a post in the Summer Newsletter and had the amazing experience of volunteering at two events. The next events coming up are the Eczema Information Sessions in Calgary, Toronto and Montreal. I’ll get back to that in a second.

The Eczema Society of Canada (ESC) was founded in 1997 by Dr. Bernice Krafchik and a group of parents with the goals of education, awareness and supporting research. Currently, ESC holds patient sessions like the Eczema Information Sessions, provides educational pamphlets (in hard copies and online in both official languages) and has support volunteers available to help others with eczema, like us or our loved ones.

My volunteer work, while it’s just started, has been amazing. It’s difficult to hear the struggles people have with eczema, but I do know that ESC is there to give hope and help in managing what can be a devastating condition. While growing up, I could have used a support group, or just someone to listen to “got it”. For many people, eczema can a debilitating condition, physically and emotionally and ESC is there.

For those reasons and a dozen others, I’m ecstatic that I’ll be involved with the Eczema Information Session in Toronto on November 12th. There will be additional information sessions in Montreal on November 8th and Calgary on November 22nd. The events will include speakers, including a dermatologist, trial skin products, a free educational package, light refreshments, and a chance to ask questions to an expert panel. It’s also a chance to meet other people with eczema, of all ages.

If you or someone you know has eczema, please attend one of the sessions. If you’re not able to do so, visit the Eczema Society of Canada website for comprehensive information about eczema management and to sign up for their newsletter.

If you do decide to attend the Toronto event, please say hi!

*NB While I am a support volunteer for ESC, I am in no way endorsed or supported by ESC. My views and opinions are my own.



I developed eczema within a few days after my birth and from the ages of nine to 17, I began to develop other atopic conditions, environmental, animal and food allergies, including eggs, dairy, shellfish and some nuts. Now, in my 30s, I have a good handle on everything, but I’m always trying to see how I can make things better by living a healthier lifestyle. My background includes public relations and healthcare communications. So, I use my skills to share my atopic and allergic experiences on my blog – Atopic Girl’s Guide to Living, with the goal of helping allergic and atopic teens and adults, since growing up and dealing with allergies and atopy is a lesson in itself. I also microblog on Twitter @AtopicGirl It's not just about figuring out what to eat. It's about finding out how to live well!

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