Addabbo honors Howard Beach foundation to raise awareness about pediatric strokes

With May being recognized as Pediatric Stroke Awareness Month, State Senator Joseph P. Addabbo, Jr. has honored The Julianna Rose Children’s Foundation with a New York State Senate Proclamation for their extensive work in promoting awareness about this condition and providing valuable programs for children.

Childhood strokes affect 77 out of every 100,000 live births and children each year, and is the sixth leading cause of death for children up to the age of 18. It can occur before birth, after birth, and throughout the later teen years. In addition, between 50 to 85 percent of children who suffer a stroke will develop serious, permanent neurological and neuor-muscular disabilities.

Mary Rinaldo Hansen founded The Julianna Rose Children’s Foundation — a 501c3 charitable non-profit organization — in 2006, after it was confirmed that her daughter, Julianna Rose, had suffered a stroke either before, during or sometime after birth, which was the cause of her hemiplegia cerebral palsy, early childhood seizures, and global developmental and learning delays.

“To be recognized with this proclamation from Senator Addabbo is an honor. Pediatric stroke awareness is vital because when most people think of a stroke survivor, they don’t think of a newborn, infant, toddler or child of any age,” said Julianna Rose Hansen, 16-year-old pediatric stroke survivor and board member of The Julianna Rose Children’s Foundation. “Unfortunately, pediatric stroke is still missed and misdiagnosed eighty-percent of the time and so are the effects, like cerebral palsy. Raising awareness about pediatric stroke is vital for our future and will help ensure correct and timely diagnosis of pediatric stroke at any age and enable infants, toddlers and kids all ages to receive the related therapy services they need to start the recovery. This proclamation is important because we aren’t just changing my life, we’re going to change thousands.” Addabbo also supported the Senate Resolution that proclaimed the month of May as Pediatric Stroke Awareness Month.

Since 2006, Hansen and The Julianna Rose Children’s Foundation, which is located in Howard Beach, have been dedicated to helping other families with children who have suffered childhood strokes.

“Seeing how Mary and her husband Jeff turned a difficult situation into an opportunity to help others is extremely inspiring,” Addabbo said. “Instead of focusing on their own troubles, they used Julianna’s condition to help spread awareness about childhood strokes, and their organization has expanded to offer programs for not only childhood stroke victims, but to help set up children with disabilities for a fulfilling future. It is my honor to present Mary and The Julianna Rose Children’s Foundation with a Senate Proclamation for their dedicated work to the community.”

While Hansen’s organization continues to grow, there is now a need to increase awareness about pediatric strokes and the help that is available for families.

To learn more about pediatric strokes and The Julianna Rose Children’s Foundation, visit