Children and Arthritis© provides information and support to families with children who suffer from arthritis and other autoimmune diseases. Through our opportunities for education, encouragement and enjoyment, families discover ways to alleviate the frustrations of chronic illness.
Over 300,000 children suffer from arthritis in the United States. Arthritis, however, is still generally thought of as an older-person’s disease. Very few support organizations are available to these young patients specifically. That’s where Children and Arthritis has stepped in.
Children and Arthritis is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization headquartered in Shreveport, Louisiana. It was founded by Dr. and Mrs. Tom Pressly in 1990. Partnering with Shriner’s Hospital of Shreveport, Tom began to volunteer his services in a free monthly clinic at the hospital. He saw the need for patients to gain support outside the walls of a doctor’s office and shared this idea with his wife, Tracy. As a child, Tracy participated in a camp for children with diabetes and found it helpful in dealing with the disease. She suggested to her husband that the concept might work well for children dealing with rheumatic diseases. And Voila! Jambalaya Jubilee was born! This weekend retreat has served children with arthritis and their families for over 25 years.
About Jambalaya Jubilee
Jambalaya Jubilee has attracted some of the nation’s leading rheumatologists to consult with patients and their families. They are supported by a large contingent of other physicians, counselors, therapists and volunteers, creating an event that is full of education, encouragement, and enjoyment. After several retreats in Biloxi and New Orleans, Jambalaya Jubilee has been held at Centenary College in Shreveport since 1994. The beautiful, quaint campus – with its dormitories, cafeteria, meeting and play spaces has proven to be an ideal setting for this family retreat. Thousands of friends, family, physicians, therapists, co-workers and good-hearted citizens help to make this annual event a success.
A chronic illness can often lead to fear, but through Children and Arthritis, thousands of children have found hope.