What a wonderful weekend! The 10th annual National Gathering Conference was held last weekend June 9-11 in Kansas City and what a weekend it was! This year’s conference was particularly special – we celebrated 10 amazing years of this wonderful Gathering which was reflected in the conference theme “10 Years & Growing,” and throughout the conference.
The Gathering was created for adults living with arthritis and rheumatic diseases to gather together and learn from healthcare and patient experts how to live their best life. We all know living with arthritis is difficult, but at the Gathering we learn together how to combat life’s daily challenges.
Continue reading Highlights from the 10th Annual National Gathering Conference
Living Your Yes with RA is a personalized goal-setting event brought to you by the Arthritis Foundation. This free forum gives you the opportunity to learn ways that can help you say Yes more than No, despite the challenges of living with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). You’ll get expert advice from a local rheumatologist plus guidance on setting goals that can help you live life to the fullest. Let us help you manage your RA, as well as communicate effectively with your own doctor.
Continue reading Coming this Fall – Living Your Yes With RA, A Personalized Goal-Setting Event
The Arthritis Foundation is proud to host signature events across the country such as the Walk to Cure Arthritis and Jingle Bell Run. However, if walking or running isn’t in your repertoire, we also host four different Arthritis Bike Classic events – all of them currently held on the west coast in Oregon and California – though riders have come from near and far to take part in these wonderful events.
Continue reading Pedal For A Purpose – The Arthritis Foundation’s Bike Classic Events
Today is National Walking Day! Spring is finally here, and we can shed a few layers and lace up our walking shoes to celebrate the day! It may seem counterintuitive, but most people with arthritis find that physical exercise is an excellent way to ease pain, soothe achy joints and increase energy levels – just check with your doctor first to discuss your arthritis type and individual needs.
Continue reading Enjoy the Health Benefits of Exercise on National Walking Day!
Today, March 30, 2017, is a day we celebrate “the contribution of physicians who serve our country by caring for its citizens.”
In 1933, the first Doctors’ Day observance occurred in Winder, GA, where the wife of Dr. Charles B. Almond proposed setting aside a day that included mailing greeting cards and placing flowers on the graves of deceased doctors. In 1958, the U.S. House of Representatives adopted a resolution commemorating Doctors’ Day. Finally in 1990, following overwhelming approval by Congress; President George H.W. Bush turned the commemoration into a national holiday.
The Arthritis Foundation is proud to honor all of our physicians that give their tireless support to their patients, families and community, and partner with the Arthritis Foundation on events like the Walk to Cure Arthritis, Jingle Bell Run, JA Days and more.
Continue reading Happy National Doctors’ Day!
The National Gathering is a truly life changing event for adults living with arthritis and rheumatic diseases. It’s a weekend filled with both professional and volunteer led sessions on a variety of meaningful topics, but more than that, it’s a weekend spent with people who understand exactly what you’re going through. People you can share your triumphs and challenges with. And by the end of it, people that you will call your family.
This is the Gathering’s 10th anniversary and this year’s theme – 10 Years & Growing really symbolizes the past and present. To help explain the Gathering a little more to people that haven’t been, we put together a Top 10 list of reasons why YOU should come to this year’s National Gathering in Kansas City on June 9-11, 2017.
- Celebrate the 10th year of this inspiring event
A lot can happen in 10 years. Since our extended family first got together a decade ago, we’ve come a long way. Many things have changed – our hair styles, what we wear, the phones we carry. But one thing is the same: There’s still a group of people who understand exactly what you face daily, living with arthritis. And now there are more of us.
- Connect with a community of people living with arthritis and rheumatic diseases
Whether this is your first year, third year or tenth; you will be welcomed with open arms at the Gathering. So many people refer to their fellow Gathering attendees as “family”. Everyone “gets it”, there’s no need to hide or sugar coat your experiences living with arthritis. Everyone understands what you are going through, and wants to listen, help, and encourage you. One past attendees told us the Gathering “changed my outlook and life. I came out of my “disease closet” and became more comfortable to be open about my disease.”
- Learn from the sessions
From breakout sessions to hanging out with the experts, there is a lot to learn at the Gathering. Our sessions touch on a variety of topics – alternative therapies, emotional health, and more. Beyond the sessions, spending time with people who live with arthritis day in and day out, you are bound to learn a few tricks and tips from your new-found friends.
- Learn how you can make a lasting impact and difference
A staggering 54 million Americans live with arthritis. At the Gathering, you will learn how you can get involved in Arthritis Foundation projects in your local community – like starting or attending a local Arthritis Support Network, fundraising for Jingle Bell Run or becoming an Advocate. Says one past attendee, “For me, such fantastic education on so many levels and subjects from the medical world, learning about advocacy & so much more. I was so “lifted up” from attending the Gathering.”
- Learn how to become an empowered patient
How does one become empowered you may be thinking. Well it starts by helping you feel stronger and more confident. We do this through our educational sessions and by arming you with the tools and knowledge you need, but the entire Gathering is really one big, fun, and powerful learning experience. Arthritis Support Networks were created out of need to connect and empower people living with arthritis and rheumatic diseases, and the Gathering is an extension of that. To be in a room full of people that truly “get it” is a very special and empowering feeling.
- Hang out with your arthritis family
If you’ve been to the Gathering before, you know that you are now part of large, welcoming family made up of past attendees that are just like you. “It’s a place you feel comfortable”, “…an environment that you feel welcomed” and “It’s truly life-changing to find your tribe of people just like you. These people become FAMILY.” These are just a few of the many things past attendees have told us about spending time with their Gathering family.
- Provide support for your adult loved ones
In a lot of cases, we’re not the only ones living with arthritis. We are the ones physically impacted, but our family and friends certainly share in our experiences and pain. At the Gathering there are a group of sessions dedicated to topics for loved ones, including sessions on caregiving and how to cope with various issues if your loved one has arthritis.
- Go somewhere new, experience the culture – and eat KC BBQ!
Kansas City, the sixth largest city in the Midwest, is filled with history and culture. It’s also renowned for its barbecue – and if you haven’t tried KC barbecue you are in for a treat. “Kansas City style” barbecue means the meat is slowly smoked over wood and covered with a tomato and molasses based sauce. But barbecue isn’t all Kansas City has to offer – it’s one of the only metropolitan areas in the county that straddles two states (Kansas and Missouri), it’s situated on the beautiful Missouri River and has numerous cultural attractions. Did you know the nation’s 33rd President Harry S. Truman was born in Kansas City? You can visit his former home, his Presidential Library, and take in a game at Truman Sports Complex where Kauffman Stadium resides – home to the 2015 World Series Champion Kansas City Royals. (Get to KC on Thursday to watch a baseball game – the Royals start a 9-game road trip on June 9). For more about Kansas City click here.
- Relax, and truly be yourself
Have you ever gone somewhere and thought you wouldn’t fit in? Have you thought people would know you’re different? Maybe it’s your slight limp, or your splints. Perhaps you’re in a wheelchair or take pills with your meals. Whatever it may be, imagine now you are in a place where no one cares about that. In fact, imagine going to place were lots of people think just like you – like they don’t fit in because they have some form of arthritis or rheumatic disease. At the Gathering, everyone fits in.
- The Monday Excursion
Each year, the Monday after the Gathering, a large group of attendees go on what we like to call “The Monday excursion” and it is now a Gathering tradition. It’s an opportunity to spend quality time with your friends and loved ones after the action-packed weekend. This optional excursion will certainly include exploring the local Kansas City area – see #8 above! – and we will post the details on our website soon.
Join us at this year’s 10th Annual National Gathering in Kansas City, June 9-11. Scholarships are available until April 3 and registration is open until May 18. We hope to see you there!
Close to 200 patients, FDA staff, industry leaders, members of the media and academic personnel listened or participated in the groundbreaking Osteoarthritis Patient-Focused Drug Development meeting on March 8. The meeting was a forum for OA patients to share their experiences with the disease and talk about the signs and symptoms that matter most to them.
Continue reading Highlights from 2017 Osteoarthritis Patient-Focused Drug Development Meeting
Last year, the Arthritis Foundation cosponsored the Accelerating Osteoarthritis (OA) Clinical Trials Workshop with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The focus of the workshop aimed at identifying ways to get new diagnostics & treatments to clinics faster for the arthritis community. Important key takeaways from the workshop included a focus on patients – how they need to be more involved in the scientific discovery process and that scientists should consider their needs and wants in designing clinical trials.
Continue reading Arthritis Foundation to Host Meeting for Osteoarthritis Patients to Share their Stories with the FDA
The Arthritis Foundation’s 2016 Conference of Champions kicked off today in Denver, Colorado, where more than 400 Arthritis Foundation volunteers, experts, leaders and influencers came together to celebrate the successes of 2016 and discuss how to build upon those achievements in 2017.
Continue reading Arthritis Foundation Celebrates 2016 Victories and Prepares for an Even Bigger Impact in 2017
Few things make the holidays brighter than giving back, jingle bells and festive — or dare we say, even ugly — holiday attire. This year, Jingle Bell Run team captains can enjoy all three at their local Jingle Bell Runs! Team captains, if you recruit at least seven team members — that’s yourself plus six members — by November 1, you will receive a limited edition Jingle Bell Run team captain scarf, donated by our friends UglyChristmasSweater.com, to wear on race day and throughout the holidays.
2016 marks the second year the Arthritis Foundation and UglyChristmasSweater.com, one of the top sellers of silly and unique holiday sweaters and apparel, have partnered to provide a limited edition prize for our top team captains. Because Jingle Bell Run participants are known for their holiday flair and costumes, it’s only natural that the Arthritis Foundation and UglyChristmasSweater.com team up to boost the holiday spirit — and the spirit of competition! While everyone can shop UglyChristmasSweater.com’s huge selection of light up sweaters, festive leggings, funny beanies and more, only team captains with seven or more team members will get to jingle with the exclusive scarf at this year’s Jingle Bell Run!
Don’t delay because quantities of the special edition scarf are limited. The deadline to recruit team members for your Jingle Bell Run team to be eligible for a scarf is midnight PST on November 1, 2016. Scarves will be mailed to qualifying Team Captains who recruit seven total team members while supplies last.
Thanks to UglyChristmasSweater.com for supporting Jingle Bell Run