6-Year-Old Boy Writes Book & Raises Over $30K for Friend with Liver Disease
Childhood friendships are some of the strongest bonds. 6-year-old Dylan Siegel has gone above and beyond what most kids his age would do for a friend. Dylan wrote a book called “Chocolate Bar” in efforts to raise money for research for his friend who suffers from a rare liver disease, of which there is no cure. Sales from the book have since exceeded over $30,000.
Dylan’s best friend, Jonah Pournazarian, suffers from a one in a million liver disease called glycogen storage disease type 1B. There is currently no cure for this disease. Dylan first approached his parents with the idea of the book in October 2012. At first his parents suggested a more conventional way of fundraising, such as a bake sale. Dylan shot down the idea and produced the first illustrated and written pages within an hour. Dylan’s mother Debra, a professional organizer, and father David, a marketing executive at Disney, realized the book “would strike a chord”, Debra told Huffington Post. The first books, sold at Dylan’s school, sold over $6,000 the first day. The Grove, a popular L.A. mall held a book signing with Dylan and Jonah, which raised an additional $5,000. Other book sales, including online proceeds and chocolate bars donated by Whole Foods, resulted the additional $19,000 raised.
Momentum has not stopped since, as a spotlight has now been put on a disease that doesn’t get a lot of attention. Dylan and Jonah continue to be best friends. Jonah has a monitor with him at school to measure his blood sugar, and Jonah has to often eat through a tube. Dylan has lifted his fund-raising hopes to $1 million to hopefully speed up the research. All donations will go to a research program at the University of Florida School of Medicine in Gainsville.