Zander Fourie

Zander Fourie, left, has 17q12 superpowers that his little sister Ruby does not.

The Carpinteria-based nonprofit 17q12 Foundation will hold its first-ever 17q12 Awareness Day on Friday, July 12. In support of the event, the Westerlay Orchids retail shop at 3504 Via Real will donate a percentage of sales to the foundation.

Individuals are considered to have the rare chromosome disorder if they have either chromosome 17q12 microdeletion syndrome or microduplication syndrome. Symptoms include Autism Spectrum Disorder and other neurodevelopmental disorders, seizures, kidney disease, Mody5 (diabetes), heart issues and low muscle tone.

The 17q12 Foundation was founded in part by Liz Fourie of Carpinteria after her son Zander was diagnosed with chromosome 17q12 deletion syndrome. The organization works to bring together families and individuals affected, to raise much-needed funding for research and to create awareness and understanding. At present, there is little research available on these syndromes for medical professionals and families. To learn more and for information on Awareness Day activities, visit or contact

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