Texas Firefighter Spreads Awareness to School Nurses
Shawn Brightman is not a man who likes to sit still. As well as being a support group leader, a local event coordinator, a NAAF fundraiser, and a Legislative Liaison, Shawn is a firefighter serving the Dallas area. Shawn also has alopecia areata, and in August he addressed an assembly of local nurses in preparation for the upcoming school year. In his own words, this is how Shawn describes the experience:
“There are two things in life I am passionate about, one is supporting those that are affected by alopecia areata and the other is my fire service profession.
“Before the school year begins, we provide a presentation to the school campus nurses district-wide to offer the opportunity to familiarize themselves with how we operate and some things to expect should we have to provide emergency services at some point throughout the school year. This also allows the nursing staff to ask any questions that they may have. At the same time we also showcase a wide array of equipment we use and allow them to see the tools and equipment.
“During a recent presentation on August 12, 2016, I had the great opportunity to share information to a group of about 80 school nurses concerning alopecia areata — specifically, what it is and how it affects those of us that have it. It was a great opportunity to share my story and how alopecia areata has affected my life. To put it in perspective, the district is about one-third of the total population of the city, which, has a population of nearly 160,000 and growing at a rapid rate; it is currently number two in the nation if my memory serves me correctly. There are about 40 elementary, 16 middle, and 10 high schools to date, with more to come. Just based on those statistics there are many younger members of our community affected by alopecia areata and it’s important these nurses are familiar with the disease to better serve their students.
“The alopecia areata community is known for its strength and dedication. We will continue to make strides to educate and advocate for all those in our family.”
We thank Shawn for all of his hard work and dedication, not just within the alopecia areata community, but for all those in his city. Dallas is lucky to have him, and so are we!