January 15th 2016
Last year, we began working on a project to produce a Limited Edition run of 250 ISC Rigging Pulleys, with a specialist high-glow finish and tree design. These awesome looking super bright Pulleys were distributed in the US by suppliers Sherrill Tree and @Height. For each Pulley sold, ISC pledged to donate $15.00 to the The Swarm ALS Activists charity.
The Swarm ALS Activists is a moped affiliated organization that raises awareness and money for the ALS Association of Florida. This organization was founded by Stephanie and John in honour of Stephanie's father Arthur Bruce Smith, who passed away from the horrible disease June 2014. ALL of the proceeds go to the ALS Association for research and equipment for people living with ALS.
ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis), also known as Lou Gherigs disease, is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. Motor neurons reach from the brain to the spinal cord and from the spinal cord to the muscles throughout the body. The progressive degeneration of the motor neurons in ALS eventually leads to the death of the motor neurons. When the motor neurons die, the ability of the brain to initiate and control muscle movement is lost. With voluntary muscle action progressively affected, patients in the later stages of the disease may become totally paralyzed. [read more on the Swarm ALS Activists website]
Stephanie, Bruce's daughter, started the Swarm ALS Activists organization at the beginning of 2015. She wanted the world to know Bruce’s story and to see how positive he was through his journey with ALS. There are still thousands of people who do not know what ALS is or what it does to someone. The amount of care, equipment, time, stress, money etc. needed by an ALS sufferer is tremendous. Insurance doesn't cover much when you have ALS, in fact if you're not in the hospital upon needing a ventilator, the insurance company will not cover it. When a person's diaphragm fails, (because with ALS all the voluntary muscle gets eaten away), the brain can be saying 'breath', but the body doesn't do the action, the body is paralyzed. It is then very necessary for a vent, or the person would suffocate. "ALS is real and it has a very big place in my heart and I want to do everything I can to help those living with it", said Stephanie.
Rich (ISC North American Sales Manager) has been working with Stephanie on the ISC project. “As a long time Arborist, I have had the pleasure of working with Bruce on many occasions at various climbing competitions and other events. While I may not have been as close with Bruce as many others in our industry, I am proud to count him as a huge positive influence in my personal career and I have benefited from his knowledge and caring on many occasions. Like many others, I have done everything that I can to continue with Bruce's mission of passing on the passion that he had for trees and those who work with them. It is for this reason that I am especially thrilled to be part of the ISC team working with Stephanie on this project- I cannot think of a better way to thank Bruce for what he has given to our industry, than to support The Swarm ALS Activists' efforts with ALS research and the provision of care to those living with this disease. In 2013 I was involved with video project highlighting the Geezer Competition, which I know held special meaning to Bruce and many of his friends. We dedicated the video in honor of Bruce and all the work he has done and all the lives he has touched in our industry”. You can view the great video of the 2013 Geezer Tree Climbing Competition here
Rich was at the Geezer competition last week, together with Tim Bushnell of Sherrill Tree, to present a cheque in the sum of $3600, to Stephanie Smith. Bruce Smith was a founder member of the Geezer competition, so what better event at which to present the cheque!
“Thank you for your donation and for the opportunity! We are planning on donating half of the money to the ALS Association of Florida at the ALS walk on March 19th. We go to the ALS walk every year since my dad was first diagnosed and continue to go in his memory and to show support to all of those living with ALS. The other half will go to ALS.tdi, which provides the most research for ALS and Steve Dezember who is a pALS (person living with ALS) with whom my mom and I are pen pals and have donated equipment and funds to before. I am also going to reach out to a couple more pALS to see what they need and sort of adopt them. We are very thankful to be able to do this project with ISC Wales and look forward to future opportunities”, said Stephanie (Bee) Smith, on behalf on The Swarm ALS Activists.
Are you the proud owner of an ISC Swarm ALS Activists limited edition Pulley? We’d love to see photographs of you with your pulley, (whether that’s in use in a tree, or as a cherished collector’s ornament on your shelf!). Please send your photos to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or post them on our Facebook page!
There's still time to get your hands on one of these limited edition pulleys and support this great charity, through Sherrill Tree, available while stocks last! Buy a Pulley
You can also donate to the ALS Association's '2016 Sarasota Walk to Defeat ALS' event, in support of Stephanie Smith's campaign here All donations- great and small, will be much appreciated!
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