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FAAN Honors Distinguished Award Recipient
New York Support Group Leaders Alisha Coupe and Cristina Stainkamp

Recognized for Outstanding Community Service With Food Allergies FAIRFAX, Va., June 16, 2008-

The Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN) recently announced the recipients of its distinguished 12th annual Mariel C. Furlong Awards for Making a Difference. Alisha Coupe and Cristina Stainkamp, co-founders of Protect Allergic Kids (PAK), were awarded the Mariel C. Furlong Award for Community Service.
Their selfless commitment to the community is evident in the time and effort they put into Protect Allergic Kids. They speak at local schools, libraries, and group meetings; organize monthly meetings that discuss and explore food allergies; and provide a place for those with food allergies to share their stories.

Most importantly, Stainkamp’s and Coupe’s emotional support has helped families become better advocates for their children’s safety needs at school and in the community. Coupe and Stainkamp were nominated by Allison Keil and Linda Nicastro. Nicastro said in her nomination, “Undoubtedly, the lives of children with food allergies are complicated by physical, emotional, academic, and social challenges. PAK’s philosophy and mission, and the co-founders’ passion, lead others to embrace these realities with an open mind and heart and an unparalleled spirit of togetherness.”

“Many families in Holbrook, N.Y., are benefiting today from the compassion and commitment Alisha Coupe and Cristina Stainkamp have for children with food allergy,” said Anne Muñoz-Furlong, Founder and CEO of FAAN. “They are role models for what others can do to make a difference.”

The annual Mariel C. Furlong Awards for Making a Difference were created in 1996 to honor individuals and corporations who have gone above and beyond the call of duty to make a difference in the lives of individuals with food allergies. The awards are named after Mariel Christine Furlong, Muñoz-Furlong’s daughter, whose food allergies as a child inspired Muñoz-Furlong to found FAAN. This year’s recipients were recognized for their involvement in increasing awareness and education associated with food allergies in four categories: school, community service, health professional, and food industry representative.

Founded in 1991, the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN) is the world leader in information about food allergy, a potentially fatal condition that afflicts about 12 million Americans, or one out of every 25. A nonprofit organization based in Fairfax, Va., FAAN has 30,000 members in the U.S., Canada, and 62 other countries. It is dedicated to increasing public awareness of food allergy and its consequences, to educating people about the condition, and to advancing research on behalf of all those affected by it. FAAN provides information and educational resources about food allergy to patients, their families, schools, health professionals, pharmaceutical companies, the food industry, and government officials. For more information, please visit FAAN at,, and
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