Meso Foundation Receives $11,000 Donation from the National Insulation Association

NIA Presents Donation to Meso FoundationOn May 13, Meso Foundation CEO Melinda Kotzian traveled to the Northern Virginia offices of the National Insulation Association (NIA) where she was presented with an $11,000 donation to the Foundation. NIA held a silent auction in April of 2014 as part of their annual convention, through which they raised $22,000. Half of the money was given to the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation, while the other half was given to the NIA Foundation for Education, Training, and Industry Advancement.

Founded in 1953, the National Insulation Association works to keep the commercial and industrial insulation industry up-to-date on industry trends and technological advances. The NIA Foundation for Education, Training, and Industry Advancement funds high-quality programs to increase awareness of the many benefits of insulation, and it has developed training and other industry-enriching programs.

Michele M. Jones, the Executive Vice President and CEO of NIA, personally presented the $11,000 donation to Melinda Kotzian. When asked why NIA chose the Meso Foundation as the recipient, Jones said, “We wanted to pick a charity that resonated with our members so that it would add to the meaningfulness of the silent auction and bring out the motivation of our members to donate.”

In its early years, NIA often saw the use of asbestos in insulation. In the 1950s and 60s, most insulators did not know of the risks involved with asbestos exposures. Due to the fact that mesothelioma has a latency period of 20 to 60 years, some insulators who were exposed to asbestos back then are now developing mesothelioma. Jones continued, “[Mesothelioma] has been prevalent throughout our history and we want to do our part and do what we can for those who have been affected by this disease.”

This donation helps the Meso Foundation maintain and improve its many programs, including its patient support services; development and distribution of online and offline educational materials; funding of the most promising research to develop life-saving treatments; and advocating the federal government for continued and increased funding of research. Upon receiving the donation at NIA, Melinda Kotzian noted, “As such a small organization, this amount makes a huge impact on what we do. Every dollar enables us to continue to operate our life-saving programs.”

To learn more about mesothelioma and Meso Foundation programs, visit curemeso.org.

Holiday Fundraising Challenge in Review

Learn more about our mesothelioma fundraising effortsOn November 24th, the Meso Foundation presented the community with a mesothelioma fundraising challenge: raise $10,000 by the end of 2013. The Peace. Joy. Cure Holiday Fundraising Challenge, as it was called, had a big catch. A long-time, individual Meso Foundation donor with the wish of remaining anonymous would match every dollar donated to the fundraiser. By December 20th, we were very close to our goal, having reached $9,892. However, this is when the game changed. Hanne Mintz, another long-time Foundation supporter, stepped up to match an additional $10,000 raised through the Peace. Joy. Cure Holiday Fundraising Challenge. This brought the goal up to $20,000 with only 12 days left to reach it, and every dollar was to be matched.

We reached out to our community through Facebook, Twitter, email, and our blog to spread the word about our fundraising challenge, and we were met with huge success. The meso community did not simply reach the $20,000 goal, but they surpassed it. When the fundraising challenge ended on December 31st, we had raised $32,876 in donations from a total of 60 generous supporters.

The Meso Foundation’s community put in a huge effort to meet our challenge. Not only did they submit donations, but they also encouraged friends and family to do the same. Ivana Mihajlovic, a 4-year mesothelioma survivor and Foundation community member and volunteer, started her own email campaign to promote our fundraising challenge. We shared Ivana’s efforts with the rest of the community and encouraged them to follow in her lead.

With the match, the $32,876 raised through the Peace. Joy Cure Holiday Fundraising Challenge has now become a total of $52,876! These donations will go towards funding peer-reviewed mesothelioma research; providing patient support services and education; and advocating Congress for increased federal funding for mesothelioma research.

The Meso Foundation is extremely grateful for the community’s participation in the Peace. Joy. Cure Holiday Fundraising Challenge. We would like to sincerely thank Hanne Mintz and the anonymous donor who matched these gifts, as well as everyone who has donated and participated in our general year-end appeal. It is with your generosity and support that the Meso Foundation continues to do its work to advance mesothelioma treatments and provide patient support.

Mesothelioma fundraising efforts never stop. Donate today and help find a cure to mesothelioma.

Peace. Joy. Cure: A Meso Fundraising Challenge

Ivana Mihajlovic

Ivana Mihajlovic, a 4-year mesothelioma survivor, recently volunteered at the Meso Foundation office

As the end of the year is upon us, we would like to update you on our “Peace. Joy. Cure” holiday fundraising challenge. The challenge began on November 24th with a goal to raise $10,000 in online donations by the end of the year with an individual Meso Foundation donor willing to match every dollar up to $10,000. Now, the game has changed! Hanne Mintz has stepped up to match an additional $10,000. This brings our fundraising goal up to $20,000, and every dollar will be matched!

With only 12 days left in the challenge, we have currently raised $9,892. We need your help to get to $20,000 by December 31st! You can give now by visiting our fundraising challenge page.

Are you wondering where your donations will go or how they will be used? The Meso Foundation is the only 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to eradicating mesothelioma and easing the suffering caused by it. Your donations will go towards funding peer-reviewed mesothelioma research; providing patient support services and education; and advocating Congress for increased federal funding for mesothelioma research. The Meso Foundation is the only non-government funder of peer reviewed scientific research to establish more effective treatments for mesothelioma and, ultimately, a cure for this extremely aggressive cancer. To date, the Foundation has awarded over $8.2 million to research.

GIVE NOW

Aside from donating, there is more you can do to help with our fundraising efforts! In conjunction with our fundraising challenge, Ivana Mihajlovic, who is a 4-year mesothelioma survivor and Foundation community member and volunteer, began her own email campaign to encourage friends and family to donate. We would like to encourage you to use the following email template to join Ivana in her email fundraising efforts. Simply use this template to send to your own friends and family explaining why they should donate towards a cure for mesothelioma.

Dear, <First name>,

I am reaching out to you with these fundraising efforts because mesothelioma has personally affected me. <Explain here how mesothelioma has impacted you>.

As we wrap up 2013, I would like to invite you to join me in supporting the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation. The Meso Foundation is the only non-profit organization dedicated to eradicating mesothelioma and easing the suffering caused by it. This organization has challenged the mesothelioma community to raise $20,000 by December 31st. Every dollar raised within the online campaign will be matched by two long-time, individual Meso Foundation donors up to $20,000.

Mesothelioma is a malignant tumor of the lining of the lung, abdomen, or heart known to be caused by exposure to asbestos. Medical experts consider it one of the most aggressive and deadly of all cancers. Approximately 3,500 Americans are diagnosed with mesothelioma every year and an estimated one-third were exposed while serving in the Navy or working in Navy shipyards.

By giving to the Meso Foundation, your donations will go towards funding peer-reviewed mesothelioma research; providing patient support services and education; and advocating Congress for increased federal funding for mesothelioma research. The Meso Foundation is the only non-government funder of peer-reviewed scientific research to establish more effective treatments for mesothelioma and, ultimately, a cure for this extremely aggressive cancer. To date, the Foundation has awarded over $8.2 million to research.

I encourage you to support the mission of the Meso Foundation and help us find a cure for this deadly cancer. Donate now at curemeso.org/fundraising/challenge.

Thank you,

<Your name>

Without the support of our community, our efforts towards curing mesothelioma would not be possible. We would like to thank everyone who supports the Foundation and works with us to eradicate this disease. To learn more about the Meso Foundation and our mission, visit curemeso.org.

GIVE NOW

Meso Awareness Day Events: Part One

ROD's Benefit for MesoSeptember 26th is nationally recognized as Mesothelioma Awareness Day. As important as it is to spread awareness every day of the year, September 26th is the biggest day to do so. Events are one of the best ways to raise awareness and funds for mesothelioma, and there are many coming up surrounding September 26th. As mesothelioma is a widely unknown and underfunded form of cancer, raising awareness is a huge step in the right direction towards finding a cure.

Four events will be held on Saturday, September 21st. The weekend will start off with Mission Cure Meso: Run for a Cure. Beginning at 8am, Karen and Mark Kalber will be running in the Air Force Marathon in Dayton, Ohio in honor of Rich Mosca and all meso warriors. Karen will be running a full marathon, and Mark will be running a half marathon. Anyone interested can support their efforts in the race by heading to Karen and Mark’s fundraising page.

Kayaking 4 Meso

Mark Wells’ 3rd Annual Kayaking 4 Meso event will also be held on September 21st. This one-way kayaking event will have two launch times. The first launch will be a 16-mile paddle beginning at Fort Hardy Park in Schuylerville, New York at 8am. Everyone will meet in Stillwater, New York for the second, 3-mile launch at around 12pm. All kayakers will finish the paddle together at Mechanicville Boat Dock in Mechanicville, New York where festivities will continue until 4pm. For more information, visit the event’s website at kayaking4meso.org.

In Alton, Illinois, the 5th Annual Miles for Meso Alton event will start at 8am on September 21st to raise funds for mesothelioma research. This event will consist of a 5k Race as well as a 2k Fun Run/Walk. There will also be activities for children, live music, and vendors. Those interested in registering for the race can do so for $30 at milesformeso.org. Registration will also open the morning of the event at 7:30am for $35. For additional information, contact the event organizer Julie Gundlach at 314-616-9272.

Closing out September 21st is ROD’s 4th Annual Benefit for Meso at Eleanor Town Park in Eleanor, West Virginia. Registration will begin at 10:30am for $25, which includes an event t-shirt as well as other goodies. A 5k run/walk with a purple and lime green color scheme will be held in the morning with prizes for the best times. Throughout the day, there will also be lunch, live music, family activities, and raffles. More event information can be found at rodsbenefit4meso.webs.com or through the event organizer Missy Bowles at 304-395-0636.

There will be two events on Sunday, September 22nd in Ohio and New York. The Bruce A Waite Miles for Meso 5k Run/Walk will be held at Ontario High School in Ontario, Ohio. Registration will open at 1pm and the 5k will begin at 2pm. For more information, visit brucewaite5k.com. In Phelps, New York, Mission Cure Meso: Annual Dog Walk for Meso will be held at Ontario County Pathways beginning at 1pm. This event is being held in memory of Dr. John Wright. Janice Wright, the organizer, can be contacted at jwrigh1@rochester.rr.com for more information.

Want to join the cause in the fight against mesothelioma? See more on how you can get involved.

Fundraising Made Easy

Lava for Lance

Lava for Lance Triathlon

by Erica Ruble, Fundraising Coordinator, Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation

I am writing this month’s fundraising blog with a heavy heart. Friday, August 16th marked the 5th anniversary of the passing of my mentor and dad, Lance S. Ruble. It feels like forever since I have seen him and heard his voice, but like it was just yesterday that he passed away. The pain and sadness is still raw and real.

Reflecting on my dad’s passing, I am reminded why I continue to fundraise and channel my anger and sadness into something positive. I know many of you out there in our community want to contribute to finding a cure for this disease. Whether you are a mesothelioma patient, caregiver of a mesothelioma patient, or you have lost a loved one, fundraising will not only impact your life in a positive way, but will also have a profound effect on others that can be life changing.

I have the privilege of speaking with many of you in the meso community about fundraising. I hear your concerns and uncertainty about hosting your own event and I understand them. However, it is important to remember that fundraising does not have to be a daunting project. It can be easy. When I began my fundraising efforts years ago, I wrote a simple letter about my dad and mesothelioma to send to family and friends. It was a great way to ease into fundraising because it was cost effective, there was no deadline, and it was relatively simple to get started.

There are plenty of other easy ideas to jump start your fundraising efforts. A dress down day at your workplace or school is one of them. For example, employees or students can make a contribution to the Meso Foundation and are able to “dress down” (i.e. wear jeans or a hat) in exchange for their donation. Another fundraiser that many community members find stress-free to implement is a “meso night out” at a favorite restaurant. For this type of event, you designate a specific night at a restaurant of your choice and invite your friends and family to attend. The restaurant then donates a percentage of sales to the Meso Foundation from the dinners ordered by your group. Having a captive audience in a setting like this provides a great platform to educate friends and family about mesothelioma.

One of the most rewarding aspects of my job as Fundraising Coordinator is talking with meso community members and hearing how passionate and excited they are after they host an event. There is something unique about being able to take something negative, scary, and unknown like mesothelioma and create a positive experience not only for you, but for others as well. National Mesothelioma Awareness Day is September 26th, and now is the perfect time to plan your fundraiser. Please reach out to me by email, phone, or on Facebook with your questions. I encourage you to join me and the meso community and be a part of our fundraising efforts and our MISSION: CURE MESO.

Be a part of the cure. Donate to the mission to cure meso today.