Meet Zetta Dove Kirkland, our 21-month-old CF Fighter! Zetta was born on July 17, 2020. We were informed six days after her birth that has a rare genetic mutation that causes Cystic Fibrosis. Zetta is an absolute light in our lives, and we fight every day to keep her lungs clear and her body functioning at its highest capacity.
Today, she's running, using sign language, saying words like "belly-button," "guitar," "blueberries," "waffle," and "bath." Her best friend is Mabel, our sweet puppy dog. She loves to play hide-and-seek. She loves to collect bits of nature from the yard and bring them to us as gifts.
Though she's doing great now, and she has a world-class care team at the CF Clinic at CHOA, we are facing a tough road ahead as her disease progresses. We have formed this team-A to Zetta-for her. Our wish is for our daughter to live a long, full life (hence, A to Z). That wish is made possible by medical advances acheived through the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
You can help in two ways:
1) Donate to us as Team Members: Jay and Kelley Kirkland (above). All proceeds go directly to the CF foundation for research; every dollar counts!
2) Join our team! If you wish to join us on May 21st at the Suwanee Town Center for the Atlanta Great Strides Walk, we'd love to have you by our side! You can click "Join our Team" below and fundraise in your own circles! All proceeds go directly to the CF foundation for research; every dollar counts!
We stride so Zetta can can reach her fullest potential. Let's get this special girl from A to Z.
Cystic fibrosis is a progressive, genetic disease that causes long-lasting lung infections and limits the ability to breathe over time.
More than 30,000 children and adults in the United States have CF (70,000 worldwide) and CF affects people of every racial and ethnic group.
In people with CF, mutations in the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene cause the CFTR protein to become dysfunctional. When the protein is not working correctly, it’s unable to help move chloride -- a component of salt -- to the cell surface. Without the chloride to attract water to the cell surface, the mucus in various organs becomes thick and sticky.
In the lungs, the mucus clogs the airways and traps germs, like bacteria, leading to infections, inflammation, respiratory failure, and other complications. For this reason, avoiding germs is a top concern for people with CF.
In the pancreas, the buildup of mucus prevents the release of digestive enzymes that help the body absorb food and key nutrients, resulting in malnutrition and poor growth. In the liver, the thick mucus can block the bile duct, causing liver disease. In men, CF can affect their ability to have children.
Today, because of improved medical treatments and care, more than half of people with CF are age 18 or older. Many people with CF can expect to live healthy, fulfilling lives into their 30s, 40s, and beyond.
IMPORTANT NOTE ON ATTENDANCE AT FOUNDATION EVENTS:
Updated June 15, 2022. To reduce the risk of COVID-19 the Foundation is taking steps to host safe events for our community. Please be advised that events may be subject to change at any time based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and local health officials.
To minimize the risk of COVID-19 infection, we ask that attendees at CF Foundation events follow these steps:
Where mandated, practice physical distancing and maintain at least a safe 6-foot distance from persons outside of their household.
Face masks are encouraged and should be worn in accordance with local guidelines. (Note, children under two years of age should not wear masks due to safety concerns and therefore should only attend outdoor CF Foundation events where they are able to distance and stay within their family group.) NOTE: For events hosted by the CF Foundation, masks will be made available on-site, when possible.
Follow basic infection, prevention and control practices by regularly washing hands with soap and water or with an alcohol-based hand gel, and by covering your cough or sneeze with a tissue or your inner elbow.
Persons with CF should consult their physician before participation in any in-person event as they may be at an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
For indoor events, it is CFF policy to invite only one person with CF to be in-person at the event at a time. For outdoor events, people with CF should maintain a safe 6-foot distance from persons outside of their household at all times.
FOR YOUR SAFETY AND THE SAFETY OF OTHERS:
For the health and well-being of the CF community, we strongly encourage that participants be fully vaccinated and have received the CDC recommended booster shot when joining us in-person for the event.
Certain CF Foundation events may require vaccination to attend.
Participants are strongly encouraged to test within 24 hours prior of arrival at an event or meeting, or as close as possible to the time of departure (if traveling).
Please be advised certain events, localities, and venues may require you to be fully vaccinated and show proof of vaccination. We will communicate these requirements in event communications.
For events where the CF Foundation requires full vaccination, meeting participants must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 at least two weeks before the date on which you will first attend the meeting. Registration and attendance at such events may require agreement to health and safety protocols and/or COVID liability waivers.
We are counting on the fact that you appreciate the potential consequences of exposing members of the CF community to COVID-19 and will not attend an event if you test positive, or have been recently exposed to COVID-19.
We cannot guarantee that all people present at the event, including participants, sponsors, volunteers, vendors, or others, have been fully vaccinated.