The long-term impact of our organization has the potential of changed lives. Once these children and teens, along with their families, come to the realization that they are not defined by their skin disease, they can begin to accept themselves as they are. This will lead to improved body image and self-esteem. The facilitated therapeutic sessions will reinforce these newfound coping strategies, so that the participants will be better able to persevere through challenges, avoid social isolation and positively address bullying. As an empowered member of our community, these children and teens will be strengthened and able to be advocates for themselves and for others who suffer from similar issues. They will see they are not limited by their skin disease and can pursue opportunities they may not have otherwise undertaken.
The short-term impact will be through connecting individuals with skin disease and birthmarks. The problems and issues faced by this population of our community is unique. By joining together with other individuals who have the same concerns and struggles, they will realize they are not alone. Their feelings will be validated, and many will likely feel understood for the first time in their lives. With some of the rare skin disorders, it will also be the first time they will have the opportunity to meet someone else who has the same condition. This will lead to a supportive community-level network for these individuals and bring about an improvement in their quality of life.