TIP is 10! Help Us Celebrate


We're raising $10,000 for TIP's 10th anniversary!

We can't protect Texans from vaccine-preventable diseases without your help!

Support the next 10 years of TIP's work!

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2018 marks our 10th anniversary under our new name and mission. Since our 2008 inception, we have reached more Texans than we ever imagined. To celebrate, we’re doing something we’ve never done before. We are working to raise $10,000 this November!

With your support, The Immunization Partnership can protect our communities from vaccine-preventable diseases like measles, menigitis, and the flu. Your dollars help TIP create a pro-immunization landscape and fight against anti-vaccine rhetoric on social media.

Our dream of achieving higher immunization rates for Texans through boots-on-the-ground community education programs, robust statewide advocacy initiatives, and immunization best practice support is becoming a reality. This was made possible by supporters like you.

With your help, we can continue striving to achieve our mission over the NEXT 10 years. Please consider giving a donation today. Your donation can be one-time, or, for an even bigger impact, it can be a recurring donation.

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Join Our Big Shot Society

Want to be a Big Shot? 

To become a Big Shot, you won’t have to give a shot or get one. Just make a gift of any size to TIP for unrestricted operating support. Of course, this is Texas, so we do appreciate BIG! Whether it is $250 or $10,000, your gift will provide vital support to TIP, so it can pursue vaccine education and advocacy.  Learn more.

 

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Three Families Affected by Vaccine-Preventable Diseases

 

 

  

Jamie Schanbaum Martin, Meningococcal Meningitis Survivor

Jamie Schanbaum

In 2007, Jamie Schanbaum started her freshman year at the University of Texas, excited for new experiences and friendships.  One night in November of 2008, Jamie went to a friend’s home to take a study break. Feeling feverish, Jamie assumed she was coming down with the flu.  She fell asleep at her friend’s house and upon waking the next morning, her symptoms had drastically worsened.  She was shivering and incredibly weak.  By the time Jamie returned to her apartment, she was barely able to move her legs. This would be the last time Jamie would walk on her own two feet.

 

Jamie was rushed to Seton Hospital. It was determined that she had contracted meningococcal septicemia, a severe blood infection caused by the same bacteria as meningitis. The loss of blood flow to Jamie’s extremities allowed for bacteria to gradually kill her limbs. They slowly blackened, hardened, and were amputated.  Jamie literally watched her limbs die, undergoing excruciating pain and the extreme trauma of losing her fingers and both legs below the knee.

 

Jamie spent a total of 7 months in the hospital, undergoing painful surgeries as her and her family’s lives were ripped apart by doubt, apprehension, fear, and most of all, regret. The regret was about not receiving a simple vaccine that could have prevented Jamie’s illness.

 

Jamie spent the next several months in rehab at St. David’s Hospital. It was emotional and challenging, but Jamie pushed through with the help of her Occupational Therapist, Bob Witford, An amputee himself, Bob helped Jamie to recover not just physically, but emotionally.  As a Paralympian cyclist, Bob encouraged Jamie to continue her love for cycling despite the loss of her legs.  In 2011, Jamie won a gold medal in the USA Cycling Paralympic Road National Championships.  In 2014, Jamie graduated from the University of Texas with a degree in Human and Family Development.  She is a tireless advocate for meningitis awareness and vaccination uptake, taking her cause all across the country. 

 

In the summer of 2009, Jamie, The Immunization Partnership and other supporters, joined forces to support a bill that became The Jamie Schanbaum Act, which required meningitis vaccinations of college students in Texas.

Greg Williams, Father of Nicolis, a Bacterial Meningitis Victim

Greg And Nico Williams

Greg Williams holds a photo of his son, Nicolis, an A&M student who died from bacterial meningitis.

Nicolis Williams grew up in Sugar Land where he attended Kempner High School, where he played football and a “mean saxophone.”  After graduation, he moved to College Station to attend A&M University.  He became a counselor for Fish Camp, a university bonding program, where upper-class students teach Aggie traditions to freshmen.   Known for his outgoing personality, winner smile, and helpful nature, the life of this amazing young man was cut short by bacterial meningitis in 2011.  He was only 20 years old.

 

Nicolis lived off-campus, and the meningitis vaccine requirement at that time applied only to students living in campus housing.  The Immunization Partnership was approached by Nicolis’ family to amend the Jamie Schanbaum Act, so the immunization requirement applied to all new students at Texas institutions of higher education, not just those living on campus. 

 

TIP led the effort to amend the law, bringing together families of meningitis victims and survivors, physicians, public health officials and lawmakers.   This resulted in the passage of the Jamie Schanbaum and Nicolis Williams Act to require all college students to be immunized against bacterial meningitis. 

 

Because of these efforts, more college students have been immunized against this deadly disease in Texas.  

Riki Graves Advocates for Her Daughter Juliana

Riki and Juliana Graves

Riki Graves pictured with her daughter Juliana.

 

While some parents refuse vaccines for their children, other parents depend on high immunization rates to keep their children safe. Riki Graves, a TIP supporter, knows firsthand how unvaccinated persons can put others at risk. Riki’s 4½-year-old daughter, Juliana, received a heart transplant when only a few days old.

 

Her story is so touching that even vaccine-doubting state legislators felt compelled to sit and listen to her during the 2017 Texas legislative session. As a heart transplant recipient, Juliana must take immunosuppressants to keep her body from rejecting her heart, which means she cannot be given vaccines made from live, weakened viruses, such as measles, mumps, rubella and chickenpox. The suppression of Juliana’s immune system makes her vulnerable to illness, especially at her preschool. Because Juliana’s life could be threatened by a vaccine-preventable disease, Riki tirelessly advocates for vaccines and for strong herd immunity.

 

When vaccine rates are high, children like Juliana are better protected from vaccine preventable diseases that could threaten their lives.  

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