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Provide Relief to Huntington’s Disease Families

Author: Sarah Parker Foster – Senior Regional Advocate of Inc.

Many HD families struggle financially, as if having HD wasn’t bad enough. Certainly most of us have wondered, at one time or another, why more programs don’t exist specifically to address this most basic of needs.

For many years, Wilderness Kids Firewood has donated money to a relief fund. Then Help 4 HD International, the non-profit who administers that relief fund, has delivered that money to families with HD who desperately needed it.

Wilderness Kids has a proven, time tested business model of buying firewood at just the right price and selling it, for less than competitors, at grocery and convenience stores in its county, where the wood is quickly purchased. This enables Kids to donate $1000 to the relief fund each year. Twice each year, recipients are chosen by drawing from a submitted pool of families in need.

You’ll find links at the end of this entry describing the history and mission of the Wilderness Kids Firewood project, and you can learn all about the kids’ involvement.

But that’s not what I want to talk about.

I want point out ways we can help HD families in need without reinventing the wheel. Mike Fernald, the man facilitating Wilderness Kids, firmly believes that this firewood project “belongs” to the entire HD community, because everyone can benefit from it. Since it has the potential to help so many more people per year, why not help make this wheel bigger?

It will take more than just this one, very remarkable and dedicated person to grow the firewood business which funds the relief fund. But you can help in plenty of ways without going to Maine or becoming a woodsman.

Fernald is capable of successfully expanding Wilderness Kids throughout the state of Maine with the help of many financial backers on a small scale. With one or more partnerships, Fernald could afford to purchase the equipment and mass produce Kids wood products. If you or someone you know is in a position of abundance, contact Mike Fernald and see how you can help the Kids business grow so that greater financial help will reach more families each year, from a source that will keep chugging along as long as HD does.

Maybe you don’t quite fall into the abundance category, but you still want to make a big difference. Remember that it takes more than one person to run a business. Contact Mike Fernald to see how you can help him out. A lot of the help he needs doesn’t cost very much, if anything. You could help design a fresh logo or provide some printed material for the company. Or put your accounting skills to work by making some spreadsheets or helping prepare tax returns for the business. You can also broadcast what Wilderness Kids is doing by advocating and writing letters on its behalf. And you can tap into your creativity by helping Kids advertise.

So decide what you’ll do to help sustain the Wilderness Kids Firewood project, or how you’ll be able to make it grow. Families involved with this project on a large or small scale, or to whatever extent they are able, will sleep well knowing they’ve helped more HD patients and families on a personal level.

Wilderness Kids has been providing financial support for HD families for many years. Help 4 HD International does a commendable job of helping to get the word out and of ensuring the proper distribution of the funds.

Don’t you think it’s time we step forward and help?


Contact Mike Fernald at or (207) 229-8240
Read the Mission Statement at
If you have a financial need and live in the US, enter for the drawing at
Donate to the relief fund at


Wilderness Kid’s Firewood Project relief fund
436 Playa Blanca
Santa Maria, CA 93455
*In the note section of your check specify: “Wilderness Kids Drawing”
Wilderness Kids Firewood – “Help4HD Relief Fund”

Learn more about Help 4 HD International at


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