Senior Director of Communications and Marketing
For Immediate Release
American Kidney Fund Advocates for Awareness and Education Across the U.S. For National Kidney Month
The American Kidney Fund Rolls Out National Kidney Month Initiatives Including Capitol Hill Visit, National Youth Art Contest, and Free Screening Program
Feb 29, 2012 (Washington, DC) – Today, the American Kidney Fund (AKF) announced its extensive calendar of initiatives for the month of March – National Kidney Month. To draw attention to the devastating impact that kidney disease has on Americans, AKF will host a variety of activities to educate and inform the general public, professional organizations and Members of Congress. These activities include hosting free kidney screenings in select cities across the country; an advocacy day on Capitol Hill focused on informing Congressional leaders; pairing up with the National Baptist Convention to hold the first ever Kidney Health Sunday; a kid’s calendar cover art contest and much more. These activities represent the efforts AKF does throughout the year to bring attention to a silent killer that affects 31 million Americans.
“This year we wanted to focus on educating and providing access to information for people across the country,” said LaVarne A. Burton, President and CEO of the American Kidney Fund. “We want people with kidney disease to be informed and we want to help those at risk for the disease learn the factors, get screened and work towards preventing this terrible disease from taking control of their life,” she added.
AKF is commemorating National Kidney Month with a program that features action days, initiatives and partnerships that will disseminate information to audiences from across the United States. These efforts are designed to meet AKF’s ultimate goal of fighting kidney disease through direct financial support to patients in need; health education; and prevention efforts.
The following series of events are planned to take place throughout the month of March:
- Third Annual Advocate Fly-in—Ten AKF patient-advocates will come to Washington, D.C., from six states for advocacy training and a series of meetings with their elected representatives on March 1. These patient-advocates will share their stories of living with kidney disease or caring for a loved one who has kidney disease, and discuss the impact of healthcare policy on those living with this chronic condition.
- A Congressional Conversation—Members of Congress will join American Kidney Fund President and CEO LaVarne A. Burton, Celebrity Health Champion Laila Ali, and the AKF patient-advocates on March 1 for a discussion of kidney health and AKF’s national campaign to prevent kidney disease, Pair Up: Join the Fight to Prevent Kidney Disease.
- Kidney Action Day on the Hill—AKF is taking the fight to prevent kidney disease to Capitol Hill with its March 1 Kidney Action Day on the Hill. With a focus on preventing kidney disease, AKF will provide free kidney health screenings, kidney health education and fun fitness activities. Members of the Congressional Kidney Caucus will headline the event, along with American Kidney Fund President and CEO LaVarne A. Burton, and Celebrity Health Champion Laila Ali.
- Kidney Health Sunday—The National Baptist Congress of Christian Education, in partnership with the American Kidney Fund, is making March 4 Kidney Health Sunday in churches nationwide. Kidney Health Sunday is designed to raise awareness about kidney disease through use of the American Kidney Fund’s Learn It! Check It! Live It! Toolkit.
- Kidney Health Screenings and Education—In recognition of National Kidney Month, the American Kidney Fund is holding free kidney health screenings and education sessions in Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Chicago, Cleveland and Raleigh, N.C. Locations and details are available on the AKF website.
- Calendar Kids Cover Art Contest—Thirteen finalists in the American Kidney Fund’s 17th annual Calendar Kids Art Contest will compete for the honor of gracing the cover of AKF’s 2013 calendar. Online voting for the winner will begin on March 15. The child who wins the cover contest will receive a trip to Washington, D.C., to be honored at AKF’s annual gala, The Hope Affair, later this fall. All 13 children who are named finalists will have their artwork published in the 2013 calendar and will receive prizes.
- 6th Annual New York Spring Event—The New York Spring Event is the American Kidney Fund’s signature fundraiser in New York City. This year, the event will honor Dr. David Cohen and Barbara and Douglas A. Asofsky. The 6th Annual New York Spring Event will take place on Thursday, March 22, 2012, at Twenty Four Fifth in New York City.
For more information about the American Kidney Fund’s National Kidney Month activities, visit www.kidneyfund.org.
About the American Kidney Fund
The mission of the American Kidney Fund is to fight kidney disease through direct financial support to patients in need; health education; and prevention efforts. The American Kidney Fund leads the nation in providing charitable assistance to dialysis patients who need help with the costs associated with treating kidney failure. Last year, nearly 90,000 people—almost 1 out of every 4 dialysis patients in the United States—received assistance from the American Kidney Fund for health insurance premiums and other treatment-related expenses. Millions of people nationwide benefit annually from the American Kidney Fund’s efforts to fight kidney disease through health education and prevention efforts. The American Kidney Fund’s national campaign, Pair Up: Join the Fight to Prevent Kidney Disease, empowers women to protect themselves—and the people they love—from kidney disease. The American Kidney Fund offers free kidney health screenings in communities nationwide, as well as extensive online health education materials and courses and a toll-free health information HelpLine (866.300.2900).
As a 10-time recipient of the top “Four Star” rating from Charity Navigator, the American Kidney Fund is ranked among the top 1 percent of charities nationwide for fiscal accountability. In addition, the American Kidney Fund holds an A+ rating from the American Institute of Philanthropy; adheres to the National Health Council Standards of Excellence; and is a member of the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Alliance. For more information, visit www.kidneyfund.org.