The Alport Syndrome Foundation (ASF) has announced that it is accepting applications from Alport syndrome patients, ages 16-22, for the Paul Silver Tribute Award, an up to $1,000 prize that can be used by winners to further a wanted and life-enriching activity, from schooling to summer camp.
The award was created in memory of Paul Silver, a film and music editor in Hollywood with Alport syndrome, who died at age 38 in 2004.
Silver received a memorial award while studying filmmaking at Pennsylvania State University in 1985, which allowed him to buy a camera so he could document his trip to Tuscany, where he was to attend a summer study program. He ended up making a documentary film about his experiences in Italy and the program’s benefits.
Applications must be submitted to ASF by Nov. 4, and will be evaluated based on the award’s purpose and its potential impact, the quality of the applicant’s essay and two required recommendations, and the completeness of the proposal.
Eleven award have been given in the past four years, and organizers said money can be use to support educational needs, projects, or wanted activities like a camp experience, voyage, or music lessons.
All applicants must submit the application form (available in the guidelines), a photograph, and two letters of recommendation — both on official letterhead: one from a nephrology professional caring for the applicant, who can discuss the applicant’s strengths, qualities and personal challenges, as well as to verify their syndrome, and another from a teacher or school administrator that addresses the applicants’ academic status, and also their qualities, strengths and challenges.
“We are in our fifth year of accepting applications for this award,” Sharon Lagas, ASF Board president, said in a press release. “Eleven young people with Alport Syndrome have already received this award and their stories are inspirational, full of courage and provide positive role models for other young people affected by this disease.”