2016 flew by! It's hard to believe this year is almost over. Like so many others do, I thought I'd give you our list of highlights from this year. But, please read on because as great as this year has been, the real accomplishment is the foundation for growth we have built that is propelling us into next year.
Here's a glimpse of how we spent our time - and your donations - this year:
- Successfully completed and met all of the required milestones on Phase 1 of our NIH-funded Self-Reading Ultrasound study
- Were awarded a $3 million 3-year grant for Phase 2!
- Planned and executed the Metastatic Breast Cancer Collateral Damage Project, including:
- Formed and convened the Advocate Task Force
- Crowdsourced input from MBC patients for issues that matter to THEM
- Used that input to develop a new scale as part of a longer questionnaire put out as part of The Health of Women (HOW) Study
- Analyzed heaps and heaps of data (still only got through the beginning of everything that's there!)
- Held the Two-day Think Tank with our advocates and provider-survivors
- Began working on next steps
- Recruited for a total of 29 studies through the Army of Women®, including launching 14 and closing 8
- Collaborated with more than 60 individuals, institutions, and organizations, across the country and internationally, on numerous innovative research projects
- Launched 7 new ImPatient Science videos
- Continued to improve our website and add more educational content
- We also improved the HOW site!
- Received (again) a 4 Star rating from Charity Navigator
- Supporters held more than 50 Act with Love events in 15 different states
- Our amazing team pulled off another highly successful Walk with Love
- Participated in Vice President Biden's Cancer Moonshot
We have created amazing momentum that will carry us forward into the new year. 2017 is already set up to be our most successful year and we promise to keep you up to date on our work.
We plan to:
- Continue work on the NIH-funded Self-Reading Ultrasound study and launch the clinical trial in 2 sites in Mexico
- Dig further into the data of the MBC Collateral Damage Project so that we can:
- Develop tools that will be useful and empowering to patients so that their quality of life can and will be improved
- Submit abstracts to various medical meetings and publish the data
- Begin working with our community partners to develop plans so we can change the way quality of life is addressed for MBC patients and make it a much higher priority
- Revitalize the Army of Women!
- Maintain our ongoing collaborations and connect with more innovative thinkers
- Complete and launch the 6 ImPatient Science videos currently in production, covering topics like BRCA mutation and clinical trials, and begin working on more
- Email me if you have a topic you'd like to see made into a video!
- Plan and execute the 10th Anniversary Walk with Love!
- Expand Act with Love events and support activist in their communities no matter where they are
- Continue to use your donations and our resources effectively and transparently
- Make sure we have a seat at the table for whatever is next with the Moonshot
- Continue to translate science and research into action!
We know that we would not have accomplished as much as we have without the generosity of our donors, the activism of our advocates, and the support of so many people in so many ways. And we know that we will accomplish much more in the coming year because of the strength of our partnerships, the brilliance of our collaborators, and the dedication of everyone we have the good fortune to call friend.
We wish you a joyous holiday season and a new year filled with health and peace,
Heather Cooper Ortner