8/16/19 - Great news! We have enough funding to purchase all 27 Cold Water Immersion tubs for Hillsborough County public high schools! We are ordering today so check back for updates as they are delivered! (It may be a couple of weeks for shipping. They are large 150 gal. tubs and may need to be delivered in groups. We will keep you updated!)
8/9/19 - Laurie started a fundraising campaign on Facebook to purchase cold water immersion tubs for all 27 Hillsborough County public high schools. Let's share and support this large undertaking for our Tampa-area friends!
8/3/19 - We are honored to announce that Advent Health is partnering with Volusia County Schools to provide AT's and heat safety equipment to all 10 public high schools.
7/25/19 - Laurie was invited to speak as a co-presenter with Dr. Seth Smith at the Heat, Head & Heart Symposium held at the University of Florida. They had a great turnout of youth and high school coaches and staff! Great job!
7/13/19 - Laurie and Ed attended the Florida ATAF Conference in Kissimmee, Florida and presented Brandon Baker with the 2019 Zach Martin Memorial Foundation Scholarship. We were SO impressed with Brandon's commitment to athletic training and the study of kinesiology.
6/1/19 - Laurie Giordano has been named an Ambassador to the Korey Stringer Institute! They highlighted Laurie in their bi-annual publication Pertinacity.
4/27/19 - Safe Kids Day We will be there with our cooling station so stop by and say hello! *WE ARE IN NEED OF DONATIONS OF BOTTLED WATER FOR THIS EVENT* Please message us if you can help us with this.
4/20/19 *FREE EKG'S FOR MIDDLE SCHOOL & HIGH SCHOOL ATHLETES*
Health Day Eggstravaganza at Golisano Children's Hospital in Fort Myers, FL. For more info, please see the info on the News & Events page.
4/16/19 Laurie has accepted an Invitation from the Korey Stringer Institute to speak at their annual Gala May 9th at the NFL headquarters in New York. At this year's Gala, Mr. Bob Sefcik and Dr. Rebecca Lopez will be receiving Lifetime Service awards for their tireless work to prevent sports-related injuries and death. Laurie stated, "It is absolutely my honor to speak at this event. That feeling is magnified by the fact that two people who have been so supportive and instrumental in accomplishing our mission will be recognized for their advocacy for young athletes."
4/13/19 - Fort Myers Brewing Co. Benefit for Zach Martin Foundation 2-6 pm. Please see EVENTS for details. This was a great time for everyone! Lots of interest and education happening along with prizes! A BIG THANK YOU TO FORT MYERS BREWING CO. for hosting our fundraiser AND donating a portion of their proceeds to support our mission!
3/18/19 EHS Education for Kids begins today! We have applied for a grant from USA Today and our application was accepted! The next step is to raise $3k through CrowdRise to go towards our project. Only donations made through our CrowdRise page count towards our goal. We have until April 12th, so click on this link: EHS Education for Kids. UPDATE:We didn't reach our goal of $3k in 3 weeks, but we are grateful to those who donated. We will continue to work on EHS Education for Kids AND those donations will be used for awareness, education, and equipment for EHS.
3/16/2019 We were invited to the FASMed Conference again this year to work with a team to make changes and update the FHSAA's heat policies. They will be given to the SMAC for review (SMAC is the advisory committee to FHSAA) & they will recommend approved policies to the FHSAA Board of Directors. We will be at the BOD meetings to support the approval of the revised Heat Policies our team worked on this weekend. You can help by emailing or calling the FHSAA Board of Directors & letting them know you support the approval of the Revised Policy 41:
- Changes the name of the policy from "Heat Acclimatization" to "Heat Policy" to allow for more comprehensive policies;
- REQUIRING all member schools to create a comprehensive HEAT POLICY that reflects the "Best Practice" policies of the Sports Medicine Advisory Committee (SMAC);
This will give member schools the responsibility of creating and following a comprehensive safety policy with student-athlete safety as 1st priority.
UPDATE: The FHSAA has again voted against mandatory safety measures at Florida High Schools. The guidelines remain as only "strongly suggested", with no responsibility or accountability given for not implementing simple, life-saving practices such as cooling zones, use of WBGT to monitor heat stress changes, and CWI tubs prepped for use at every practice. We are beyond disappointed in FHSAA's continued practice of prioritizing avoidance of legal liability, from their own admitted lack of oversight, before the safety and lives of high school students.
3/5/2019 We have a booth at SEATA in Atlanta GA. We'll be showing our Cold Water Therapy Guide to Heat Illness video AND have a Portable Cold Water Immersion Tub on display that someone will win this weekend!
UPDATE: The winner of the Portable CWI Tub is Courtney Brackeen from Tennessee! Watch for pictures coming soon of what Courtney is doing.
2/1/2019 We have a busy Spring coming up! 2/22 Laurie will be attending a seminar by Dr. Doug Casa & will be part of a discussion panel regarding EHS. There are lots more activities in the next few months, including our Annual BBQ, so stay tuned for info!
1/1/2019 Happy New Year! We hope you all had a great holiday season with lots of love.
11/11/2018 A Party with a Purpose gala at Society in Fort Myers, Florida. We had a great night and a lot of fun with great music, silent auction with signed sheet music, electric guitar signed by the Eagles, Rolling Stones album signed by all band members, amazing vacations & cruises, as well as raffles for event tickets & even a diamond necklace from Jared! The hors d'oeuvres were tasty & did not last long! Attendees were able to see the new Cold Water Therapy for Heat Illness video that will be officially released next spring. We are so grateful to all of our partners and donors for their incredible support!
8/9/2018 Purchase with purpose. Amazon donates to Zach Martin Memorial Foundation and Heat Stroke Prevention Inc when you shop for back to school supplies at smile.amazon.com.
8/3/2018 We have started production of the Cold Water Immersion video! A big THANK YOU to Dustin R. for bringing all the ice, Sally K. for the cases of water, and our actors who volunteered their time to make this video happen: Andrew R., Austin R., Brandon J., Conner G., Dustin R., Jim M., Junon A., Zach A.
We are committed to funding this project, and believe that you will support us in this important work by continuing to donate what you can to make sure #NotOneMore athlete dies from #EHS.
7/30/2018 Bell High School received their donated CWI tub today and sent a great picture of their football team with a "Thank You" sign! Check out our FB page to see it! https://www.facebook.com/zachmartinfoundation/
7/27/2018 Good Morning America highlighted Zach's story in a segment on EHS and included part of Laurie's interview with them! We are so grateful for their interest in spreading the word about EHS to as many people as possible!
7/24/2018 All Levy County High Schools have CWI tubs as of today! We are so excited to be able to donate CWI tubs to Cedar Key, Chiefland, and Williston High Schools this week! Check out our FB page to see the pictures they sent us! https://www.facebook.com/zachmartinfoundation/
7/14/2018 We are so excited to share that Zach Martin Foundation has given our first ever scholarship award! The recipient is Alaina Locus, a Senior Athletic Trainer from UCF, and she is so deserving of this gift. Join us in wishing her many successes in her future!
6/13/2018 Policy 41 was approved with mandatory heat illness education video which is available on the NFHS website; strongly recommended Heat stress monitoring; strongly recommended cooling stations with cold water immersion tubs; no regulation by FHSAA for summer workouts. Sen. Passidomo called me to express her disappointment with the FHSAA vote today. She is looking into drafting a bill for a Florida law addressing heat illness. This is a long process & we are here for the fight!
6/5/2018 Laurie will be attending the FHSAA Board of Directors meeting on June 12th for the vote on WBGT and CWI tubs, as well as regulations for Summer conditioning.
The meeting agenda has been published at FHSAA.org. The policies included in the agenda for approval have had no changes since the May meeting. This is disappointing for a number of reasons. We have continued our Change.org petition online, and have linked it to our Foundation Facebook page as well, in an effort to reach as many people as possible who will stand with us and support MANDATORY policies for high schools to use WBGT's and the standard guidelines for practice modifications that go along with it, to have CWI tubs accessible for treating heat stroke within 5-10 minutes, and to regulate Summer conditioning, which currently is NOT REGULATED by the FHSAA. The constant emails, phone calls, and media attention is making an impact. During a conversation with Justin Harrison, Executive Director FHSAA, he stated that the policies recommended by the Advisory Committee WOULD be open for discussion, and could be moved to a vote by the Board. YOU ARE MAKING A DIFFERENCE! Please continue in your efforts to contact the FHSAA Board via emails and phone calls. We are looking at a victory on the horizon!
5/9/2018 Zach Martin Foundation has donated three CWI tubs to local high schools who did not have one. We are proud to say that Lemon Bay High School, Charlotte High School, and the new Bonita Springs High School now have life-saving equipment for EHS. Check out our FB page to see the pics! https://www.facebook.com/zachmartinfoundation/
5/2/2018 Laurie attended the FHSAA Board of Directors meeting Monday the 30th for the planned discussion of the Heat Illness policies and the Board's vote.
The FHSAA Board DID vote to pass a requirement for coaches, parents, and athletes education. Specifically making it a requirement for them to take the NFHS Heat Illness online course. This is a FREE, 30-minute educational course, and is the same one we referenced in earlier petitions. Coaches, parents & student-athletes must certify they have completed the course, and the goal is to have this policy in place before the end of this school year. We are so encouraged by this action, as education is the best foundation for change. The Board did not vote on the WBGT's and CWI tub policies, ultimately concluding they needed more data on what schools currently have regarding personnel, including Certified Athletic Trainers, as well as which schools currently have WBGT’s & CWI tubs. They will review this data and these two items will be on the June Board meeting agenda again for discussion.
FHSAA's legal counsel reiterated his position that legislation is the only way mandatory policies like these can be policed and enforced, and that the inability to actively monitor if all schools were complying with these requirements would create liability. We disagree. We believe, as the governing body for high school athletics, it is ABSOLUTELY the FHSAA’s responsibility to take the lead and create safety policies regarding athletic activities on school property. I do not believe that safety guidelines for our kids, on school property, with school employees should be a legislative issue. There was still NO mention of including summer conditioning or practices in the FHSAA policies and guidelines. This issue was addressed in my comments to them, as well as in an Advisory Committee member's comments. This is a MAJOR problem, with summer just around the corner, and no regulations in place. However, the Board members ARE listening. They are educated people who have a responsibility to hundreds of thousands of high school students, and many, if not all, are parents themselves. They NEED to hear from you on THESE THREE POLICIES. Contact information for the FHSAA Board can be found at: http://www.fhsaa.org/gov/board/2017-18 Tell them specifically that you want Wet Bulb Globe Thermometers to be a REQUIREMENT, Cold Water Immersion tubs to be a REQUIREMENT, and Summer Conditioning/Training to be INCLUDED with the same FHSAA policies and guidelines & that it is THEIR responsibility to protect our children. Emails, phone calls, re-sharing this petition and talking about the changes that need to happen to protect our kids is making this happen. Have your high school students sign this petition, the cheerleading team, the lacrosse team, baseball, cross-country and football teams and any other club or sport that practices outside in the heat. Students standing with us will also make a huge impact! Changes in Florida WILL influence changes in other states! We have one victory! Lives have already been saved because of your actions! The FHSAA STILL has left too much to chance, so we need to press on! Will you make your voice heard?
Please click the link to go to Change.org and sign our petition https://www.change.org/p/fhsaa-get-lifesaving-heat-illness-policies-approved-for-florida-high-schools?recruiter=416965542&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=copylink&utm_campaign=share_petition
4/15/2018 The Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) Board of Directors are currently reviewing items for the agenda for the April 29th meeting. They MUST hear from YOU on the lifesaving Exertional Heat Stroke safety policies we have worked so hard for. Please click the link to go to Change.org and sign our petition https://www.change.org/p/fhsaa-get-lifesaving-heat-illness-policies-approved-for-florida-high-schools?recruiter=416965542&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=copylink&utm_campaign=share_petition
3/6/2018 - Our inaugural Benefit will be April 7th! Keep checking here or follow us on Facebook @zachmartinfoundation and on Twitter @zachmfoundation
3/1/2018 - We are so excited to share with you the following updates from the FASMed Conference. Laurie and Ed were invited to attend the January conference to provide personal insight on the devastating impact of Zach's death, and to contribute to new policies for the FHSAA, regarding Cold Water Immersion and the use of Wet Bulb Globe Thermometers (WBGT), to ensure student-athlete safety. We joined sports medicine physicians, certified athletic trainers, and school administrators and coaches to discuss the current policies, avenues of improvement, and got to work writing policies that were actionable by all institutions and persons responsible for athlete safety.
January 29 & 30, 2018 FASMed Conference UPDATE:
Immediately following the FASMED meeting. The FHSAA SMAC met to further discuss the items of the event and took the following actions:
1. moved forward a recommendation to the FHSAA Board to require WBGT
2. moved forward a recommendation to the FHSAA Board to require cold water immersion
3. moved forward a recommendation to the FHSAA Board to add language to preseason conditioning in the summer to include WBGT and CWI
4. moved forward a recommendation to the FHSAA Board to require school administrators to comply with concussion and sudden cardiac arrest educational videos
5. moved forward a recommendation to the FHSAA Board to update the FHSAA AT 18 form to reflect updates from the Berlin Conference
6. moved forward a recommendation to the FHSAA Board to engage in discussions with school superintendents to require mandatory coaches safety education
*Underlining and italics added by ZMF