Since you are on my mailing list you know about NASH, unlike most of the people. We had the 2019 version of NASHday on the 12th and as I think about how that event went I am struck by the fact that as a health outreach it was unusual.
I'll explain why but first, the punchline, NASHday was about people's lives and not about money.
We have every kind of "DAY" that you can think of. Every cause has a day or a month, some peg to hang the cause on and to focus attention. Just as an example, these are the top five unofficial holidays according to toptenz.net.
1. Black Day.
2. Autistic Pride Day.
3. International Free Hugs Day.
4. Monkey Day.
5. Record Store Day.
OK, so far so good. Every thought gets a day so the concept of claiming a day for your cause seems like it might be mostly futile. The other fact about event days is that they are commonly about raising money. We have a long history of seeking donations for every cause with a champion willing to ask people to donate. It is a vast industry with Galas, runs, contests, conferences, appeals of all kinds.
A feature of most events today is to get you to donate money in some way. That isn't to suggest that the groups seeking your money aren't worthy. So many charities and non-profits do fantastic work and events are an important part of their fund raising efforts. It is honest and honorable work and we owe a lot to the very large group of people who seek something better for some part of our society.
The thing to understand about NASHday, and the thing that makes me proud to have been a small part, is that it is not about money. As a worldwide community dealing with one of the great tragedies of our time, that of the coming epidemic of death from liver disease, we were focused for that day on education and outreach.
We had thousands of people around the world, representing hundreds of organizations and dozens of countries who came together for one day in June to try to make a difference in the lives of all of us. It wasn't about fund raising. We all gave of our time and effort to try to bring the reality of the silent killer that is liver disease into the bright light of public awareness.
There is so much discord and misery in the world that it is remarkable to me that so many people around the world could unite around the single idea that people should know more about their liver health and not die too young from a mostly preventable disease.