International Women's Day 2024

For International Women's Day this year, we thought it would be good to have a round-up of just some of the amazing articles written by women for Juvenile Arthritis Research, some of the interviews and stories by women that we have shared, and some of the amazing young girls who have supported Juvenile Arthritis Research with fundraising and other initiatives too. 

With Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) affecting more girls than boys, our JIA stories page reflects this with the stories of some amazing young women and girls who are truly inspirational. 

You can read the stories of Betsy, Keavagh, Effie, Jo-Anna, Emily, Hollie, Chloe, Kelly, Isabella, Hallie, Amber, Lola, Liz, Sophie, Eilean, Mia, Amelie, Charlotte, Riitaj, and Yasmin. We have a new story shared on the page from Abbie too which is an absolute must-read.

Delving even deeper into what life with JIA is like, Sophie, Chloe and Liz shared more for World Arthritis Day. You can also read Sophie's "Week in the Life" here

We've had some brilliant articles and interviews with inspirational women, including The Girl with Arthritis, Eilean wrote a fantastic piece with tips for heading to university, and Amber's write-up of her time in Texas as an ambassador for Juvenile Arthritis Research was super. Sport's physiotherapist Angela Jackson wrote an important guest post for us about reducing the risk of injury in sporty children. And who could forget that fantastic Christmas poetry workshop that children's poet Kit Weston ran for us!

On our website, we also include links to interviews with England Netballer Summer Artman and Sylvie Devaney at BBC Sport who both have JIA but have not let JIA stop them from following their dreams. Trinity's JIA story was featured in the EULAR video for World Arthritis Day in 2023 which you can watch here. 

We have so many amazing young fundraisers including Hollie, Ellie and Molly, Mia, Evie, Arabella and Betsy and many more who's fundraising is vital to support our work - thank you! And just this week Sarah and Lynne organised an incredible coffee morning to fundraise for Juvenile Arthritis Research. 

And of course, a huge shout-out to our young volunteer Abbie who not only came up with the idea of "A little Box of Hope" support packs to send to those with JIA but also helps to pack and send each box for younger children. Ananthi is our amazing volunteer who sends out the teen version of A Little Box of Hope pack.  

On the science and research side of things, we work alongside some incredible female scientists including Dr Stephanie  Shoop-Worrall. You can read our interview with Stephanie here . This year for International day of women and girls in science, we interviewed another inspirational researcher Dr Lianne Kearsley-Fleet which you can read here. 

We have Dr Lola Solebo to thank for the amazing videos on Uveitis that we share as well as Dr Lola sharing her expertise on uveitis when we develop new resources. 

You have probably heard of our #ThinkJIA campaign - the original idea was developed by our volunteer Rebecca who wanted an easy way for people to remember to #ThinkJIA if a child was experiencing joint pain. The idea was further developed and refined with the support of Professor Helen Foster who's work has also influenced the JIA landscape across the globe with the open resources at pmm online including her work on developing pGALS which doctors across the UK and across the world now routinely use for assessing the musculoskeletal system in children and young people. 

Many amazing women have input into the development of our resources, including parents, teachers and medical professionals - thank you! Our volunteer team is made up of many incredible women who juggle busy lives, family, jobs and health issues and still have such a strong passion to make a difference and help others that they make the time to volunteer with Juvenile Arthritis Research - We couldn't do what we do without you - thank you. 

And our webinar to support families with their mental health and emotional wellbeing uses the expertise of child psychotherapist Chloe Haines. 

So today is a day to celebrate and thank all of these people and so many more in the organisations that we work with worldwide and who have been part of Juvenile Arthritis Research's journey so far. Thank you for everything you do.