Membership is available to individuals with a medical diagnosis of dwarfism or form of short stature, as well as their families, grandparents, relatives, and all medical professionals. Little People of America (LPA) defines dwarfism as a medical or genetic condition that usually results in an adult height of 4’10” or shorter, among both men and women, although in some cases a person with a dwarfing condition may be slightly taller than that. The average height of an adult with dwarfism is 4’0, but typical heights range from 2’8 to 4’8.
Dues are $55 per household per year. A three year membership is $120. Lifetime membership is $750. Senior memberships (age 65+) are $20. International Members or full-time college or vocational students (12 units or more) are $35.
On the surface, LPA membership benefits might appear to be limited to a quarterly newsletter and nothing more. This couldn’t be further from the truth. A membership in LPA does provide you a high quality, full color LPA Today quarterly newsletter, but that’s only the beginning.
For New Parents: Our parent groups are one of our most valuable membership benefits. Imagine parent-to-parent and peer support from thousands of people who understand the variety of medical, educational, social, and psychological concerns experienced by people with dwarfism. According to the current birth rate of 4 million babies born each year in the US, we have 400 new babies each year with a type of dwarfism. We have knowledge and energy to share!
For Pre Teens: Imagine being able to play with kids your own size, engage in sport competitions where you are an equal, and knowing that you are in a group of your own peers. LPA chapter, district and national schedule many annual gathering, picnics and events that allow our children to meet others just like themselves. It’s amazing how fast friendships are made. And the best part is the friendship continues long after the event is over.
For Teens: For many short stature individuals, this can be the most difficult times in our lives. So many questions arise as we mature, and life as a teenager can be a challenge. LPA understands this need and has created Teen social groups on both the national and district levels. Teens can chat with other teens and share experiences, lending support on everyday life issues. Our district I know has a awesome Teen group.
For Adults: And if life as a teenager wasn’t complicated enough, a dwarf, headed out to college or the workplace will face a bunch of new challenges. An individual with an LPA membership has at their disposal many tools to assist in everyday life. Those who are headed out in pursuit of their college degree can apply for an educational scholarship. In the workplace, LPA has national advocates constantly working on legislation regarding genetic discrimination, patient healthcare rights, public access and community outreach.
Medical Issues: LPA is committed to providing access to the most current medical information available. Dedicated and experienced physicians from LPA’s Medical Advisory Board generously volunteer to assist members and their physicians with medical consultations, referrals and critical information. These physicians cover multi-specialized fields of practice.
District & National Conferences: Each year, LPA holds one National and up to 2 conferences per district. The National conference draws upwards of 1600, including 200 international attendees. These conferences offer so many wonderful things – workshops, social opportunities, dances, connections, medical resources, an EXPO of dwarfism-related products. District conferences are held in the spring and fall. The national conference occurs in a different place in the United States each year, in either late June or early July.