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The Global Ambassadors are a network of advocates for the Vascular Birthmarks Foundation who work together to raise awareness about vascular birthmarks, anomalies, and related syndromes (VBARS) all while cultivating a supportive community. This network is comprised of people living with a vascular birthmark, as well as friends and family members who have a loved one affected by VBARS. We are organized into five fundamental committees, which are led by members of the VBF Global Ambassador Council. Our council is composed of the most active advocates within the Global Ambassador program who donate extra commitment time towards maintaining program engagement. Each committee initiative serves the purpose of expanding our reach and spreading awareness about VBARS, while supporting the mission of the VBF. Our committees consist of Regional & Virtual Meet Ups, Awareness, Fundraising, Ask/Accept Anti-Bullying, and the Parent Advocacy Network. The VBF Global Ambassador Program supports the VBF mission, provides helpful resources to our network, and amplifies Dr. Linda Rozell-Shannon’s vision.

Regional and Virtual Meet Ups organizes, facilitates, and encourages members of the VBF Global Ambassador community to connect through channels beyond social media such as Zoom meetings or in person local meet ups. 

Fundraising helps our community raise funds for VBF through online and in person events which goes towards our mission of networking those affected by a vascular birthmark, anomaly or related syndrome (VBARS) to the appropriate medical professionals for evaluation and possible treatment.

Awareness is designed to help educate, spread VBF resources as well as expand the VBF Global Ambassador program by connecting Ambassadors with areas of interest in the Vascular Birthmarks Foundation network.

Ask/Accept Anti-Bullying promotes a ‘Bully-Free’ zone and will raise awareness in regards to handling bullying, acceptance and provide support within the community.

Parent Advocacy Network is a safe space created to help navigate the journey for parents and families with children affected by VBARS.

Search this page to find someone local – or with whom you’d like to connect – to learn more about:

  • Physicians in your area who can help to medically manage vascular birthmark cases
  • Their experience living with a vascular birthmark
  • VBF’s Day/Month of Awareness, Put on Your Birthmark, Buddy Booby Read-Along, Ask/Accept anti-bullying, and other birthmark advocacy and awareness programs
  • Fundraising events in support of VBF – create a Birthday Fundraiser and get some awesome VBF Global Ambassador swag!
  • And much more!

If you or someone in your family has a birthmark and you’d like to speak with others who have had a similar experience, the Global Ambassadors can also help find personal support from other patients and families based on their own unique experiences.

NEWSLETTERS

AWARENESS

RESOURCES

CONTACT

  • Want to learn more about the VBF Global Ambassadors? For any questions or feedback, please contact:

Scott Cupples
Director, VBF Global Ambassador Program
scott@birthmark.org

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Erika Campos, United States, Wisconsin

Martin was born with faint, pink marks that we were told were due to birth and would fade. They didn’t fade; they got brighter and darker and became raised, it covered his back, half of his chest, full arm and side of his head. He was misdiagnosed and when his skin started to open with sores we took him to the ER where many tests were done and in a couple of days was diagnosed with PHACE Syndrome. He was two months old, we were terrified, something we were told would not be any harm was actually internally affecting him and was potentially life threatening as they were unsure he was getting enough blood supply with the narrowing of his arteries. He started taking propranolol to fade the hemangioma and we became experts at bandaging our months old baby so his sores would close and not become infected. His few physical delays didn’t stop him as he is now a four-nado who loves to run, play and sing. He is no longer on propranolol but is on a daily aspirin as a blood thinner for his narrowed arteries and he is still at risk of stroke. He will continue to have many annual tests done and our journey continues as he starts school this year. We are truly blessed to have him and we adore his beautiful PHACE and soul.

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Erika Flores, Ecuador, None

Hello I have a daughter with a venous malformation and here in my country Ecuador we have many children with birthmarks but we do not have treatments. I became an ambassador for the experience. My daughter lives every day with a birthmark, and I want to be able to help those who need it.
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Erin Eskildsen, United States, Illinois

First time mom never knew or heard of vascual birthmarks until she was born. Already scared enough of the delivery process had to to have a c section then having my daughter be deliverd and not being able to see her for more than 10 seconds, as they took her down to NICU for what they said was some sort of a possible rash. it was all very scary amd emotional and i would love to help out other new moms and eveeyone else out there that doent know what a vascular bm is!

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Erin Lois Williams, United Kingdom, None

I’m 21, and live in North Wales. I was born with the Portwine Stain on the left side of my body. Since I was a baby I have had numerous of laser therapy sessions in Alder Hey Children Hospital in Liverpool which helped to fade out the birthmark until I was 18, then I was transferred to Whiston Hospital in Prescot, and then to St Helens Hospital which I now attend every three months. I’m happy with the progress, even though I know the Portwine Stain will never dissapear.

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Eryn Norton Moland, United States, Kansas

My daughter Alysa was born in October 2017 after a healthy pregnancy and uncomplicated delivery. The doctor thought Alysa had a bruise from her birth but soon after we knew it was not a bruise. Our journey into vascular birthmarks began.

At 1 week old Alysa was diagnosed with a port wine stain. She had her first check of her eyes for signs of glaucoma at 2 weeks old, and we declined an MRI in favor of clinical monitoring for SWS due to the location of her PWS. Alysa’s port wine stain covers her left cheek, ear, and neck. She is monitored regularly for glaucoma and gets laser treatments in Kansas City.

Alysa doesn’t let anything bother her and proudly wears her “special spot” each day. She is a smart, happy, healthy, and silly little girl! I don’t know what we would do without her!

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Esther Aliaga, Peru, None

She was born with this mark, we always try to see it as something natural, part of her. But from a very young age she perceived herself differently and when she met new people she covered her face, many people ask her and she gets uncomfortable; she has undergone 5 laser treatments and is better but she is afraid of them, but she knows that it is for her own good

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Eva Haimovich, Israel, None

Hi:) I’m Eva. I’m originally from Israel. I was born with a port wine stain on the right half of my face. I started getting laser treatments when I was 1 year old. My doctor in Israel insists that my type of PWS is very unique and there are only a few in the world like me(💁🏻‍♀️😂) since it’s getting off little by little with every treatment and there’s no trace of it.
I’m an actress, singer and dancer as well as an Economics and Philosophy student. As a performer, I encounter a lot of unawareness regarding Vascular Birthmarks which is a pitty since our unique appearances makes into such unique storytellers. As I’m excited to get into VBF, I’m even more thrilled to learn and collaborate in order to spread awareness in my industry🤩✨

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Fatima Quddusi, United States, Minnesota

I was born with a PWS on my right cheek. Early on, I had to struggle with the scarce availability of dermatologists managing birthmarks in children. Therefore, it ignited an ever burning passion to pursue medicine and specialize in pediatric dermatology to ensure all children with birthmarks have access to latest information about treatment and management of various vascular malformations and birthmarks.

I was supported by members of VBF social community when I was going through my laser treatment and that is when I decided I will give back to it one day. I am on the first step right now, as I am doing my residency in pediatric and adolescent medicine at Mayo Clinic. Alongside, I want to contribute in promoting the work of VBF so everyone who has a birthmark feels supported and loved.

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Fran Bennewith, South Africa, None

My daughter Stephanie was born with a lymphatic vascular malformation on her right eye (eyelid and behind the eye). After posting on social media, Dr. Linda of the Vascular Birthmarks Foundation reached out to help. Through incredible intervention of Dr. Linda, Stephanie has received three life-changing operations from top specialists in New York. Our family is forever grateful for VBF.

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Gabby Spencer, United States, Maryland

I’ve grown up listening to the whispers and assumptions and the questions. I was used to being laughed at and feeling like an outcast. I saw having a difference as a negative thing until I tried to cover my birthmark with makeup. I left the store in tears because I didn’t recognize myself. It took me until the summer before 8th grade to realize that my birthmark is a part of me that makes me who I am. It was on that day I decided to always let my true color shine through.

Now I am 16 and an aspiring musician who wants to show that world that our idea or normal and perfect is an illusion. Having a difference can’t stop you from chasing your dreams and reaching them. We were all made the way we are for a reason, and it’s beautiful. That’s the message I want everyone to hear.

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