WEST CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, February 2023: PanAmerican Seed® is entering its fourth year of charitable contributions to less-widely known causes on behalf of Beacon® Impatiens. Over the years, the disease-resistant Beacon series has shined the light on several organizations through an annual donation of a percentage of global seed sales. For 2023, PanAmerican Seed announces this year’s Beacon Impatiens donation will fight Friedreich’s ataxia (FA), a debilitating, life-shortening, degenerative neuro-muscular disorder affecting one in 40,000 people worldwide.
Beacon will partner with two charities fighting this disease – one in the United States and another in Australia. Both the Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Alliance (FARA - US) and Friedreich Ataxia Research Association (fara - Australia) are organizations dedicated to pursuing scientific research leading to treatments and cures for FA. During the 2023 gardening season, Beacon Impatiens will build awareness and show support for those living with this disease.
Through fundraising and donations, FARA (US) and fara (Australia) fund competitive grants for research, drug development and clinical research programs. They promote collaboration among scientists worldwide, elevate the patient voice, and host open forums to advance therapeutic development for FA.
“We are so grateful to PanAmerican Seed for committing a portion of their Beacon Impatiens seed sales,” says Jen Farmer, CEO of FARA (US). “When you support FARA through seed purchases, you are not only brightening your garden with colorful blooms, but also helping to cultivate a bright future for those living with FA and their families.”
“We at fara (Australia) rely exclusively on the generosity of members of the public and commercial partners to raise funds for the critical research that will support hope and create impact,” says Brad Hyde, CEO of fara (Australia). “The Beacon Impatiens contribution to our fundraising efforts will support us help those living with FA to also ‘grow stronger and shine longer.’ Our thanks for this incredibly generous contribution to fund the research into treatments and hopefully one day a cure for FA.”
“PanAmerican Seed is thrilled each year to give back and strengthen the human necessity to care and support those in need in our communities,” says Sarah Makiejus, Marketing Manager for PanAmerican Seed. “By purchasing and planting Beacon Impatiens, gardeners can also take pride in making a difference in the world.”
Symptoms of Friedreich’s ataxia typically begin in childhood between the ages of 5 and 18. FA leads to loss of muscle coordination, fatigue, vision impairment, hearing loss and slurred speech, scoliosis, diabetes, and serious heart conditions.
Beyond the monetary donation at the completion of the 2023 season, PanAmerican Seed will raise further awareness of the FA fight through its social media channels, website and customer communications. fara (Australia) will promote local garden retailers and nurseries where Beacon Impatiens are sold.
Beacon Impatiens was developed by PanAmerican Seed to have high resistance to Impatiens downy mildew (IDM), a devastating plant disease that has caused frustration and plant loss in gardens around the globe since 2010. Beacon Impatiens bloom all summer long and quickly fill hanging baskets, window boxes, patio containers and landscapes with cheerful, brightly colored blooms. They offer the same look, size and easy-to-grow care as traditional impatiens without the risk of IDM.
To learn more about The Beacon Story, please visit www.BeaconImpatiens.com. To get a closer look at our 2023 charitable organizations, please visit www.BeaconImpatiens.com/ShineTheLight.
About the Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Alliance
The FARA (US) mission is to marshal and focus the resources and relationships needed to cure Friedreich’s ataxia by raising funds for research, promoting public awareness, and aligning scientists, patients, clinicians, government agencies, pharmaceutical companies and other organizations dedicated to curing FA and related diseases. FARA is a national, public, 501(c)(3), non-profit, tax-exempt organization. Learn more at www.curefa.org.
About the Friedreich Ataxia Research Association
At the Friedreich Ataxia Research Association Australia (fara), our Mission is to support the FA Community by raising funds for and aiding research into treatments and a cure for Friedreich’s Ataxia. fara has contributed over $4.5 million to FA research in Australia and overseas since its inception in 2003. Learn more at www.fara.org.au
About PanAmerican Seed
PanAmerican Seed is an internationally renowned breeder and producer of seed-raised flowers and vegetables based in West Chicago, Illinois, USA that produces high-quality and best-performing varieties. Research facilities in North and South America, the Pacific Rim and Europe enable us to test and evaluate new varieties under numerous climate conditions. Our state-of-the-art seed distribution center guarantees quick, efficient processing of orders for our worldwide customers. Visit www.panamseed.com for more information.