Issuu on Google+

NORTHERN CALIFORNIA CHAPTER

MOVING TOWARD A WORLD FREE OF MS | WINTER 2011

MERCY MS CENTER

NORTHERN CALIFORNIA’S FIRST AFFILIATED CENTER OF COMPREHENSIVE CARE The Northern California Chapter is happy to announce the approval of its first Affiliated Center for Comprehensive Care, the Mercy MS Center. The Mercy MS Center is the first affiliated center in Northern California, providing patients with a unique group of medical caregivers who have specific proficiency in the diagnosis and treatment of MS in a setting where specialized equipment is available. “This [approval] recognizes our innovative team approach, quality of treatment, level of expertise and continuity of care, always keeping the individual patient’s needs foremost in our minds,” said Dr. John Schafer, medical director of the Mercy MS Center. The Mercy MS Center provides MS patients with a variety of education and support services including group medical appointments, regular patient education and access to a certified MS nurse. They also work with patients in-person for one-on-one support, disease education and to provide consultations for research trials for new cutting edge medications. Since MS can affect a variety of functions of the body, including vision, bladder function, mobility, coordination, pain and emotional health; a team approach to care is given. Mercy’s MS Center enlists the following specialists for the spectrum of MS needs:

• • • • • • •

Neurologists Radiologists Urologists Ophthalmologists Physical Medicine Specialists Behavioral Health Specialists MS Nurse Specialists

The National MS Society launched the clinical affiliation program in October 2009, to focus on the experience of the patient and emphasize comprehensive and coordinated MS care. The Affiliated Centers for Comprehensive Care model: • Focuses on the experience of the patient • Recognizes the benefit for patients to have access to a full array of medical, psycho-social and rehabilitation services to address the varied and often complex issues related to living with MS. • Acknowledges clinical sites that demonstrate the ability to provide coordinated and comprehensive MS care to patients, while allowing flexibility in center operations and staffing models. • Involves a strong collaboration between the Society and center. To learn more about the Mercy MS Center, please call 1-800-344-4867.


MS CONNECTION WINTER 2011 National MS Society Northern California Chapter 1700 Owens Street, Suite 190 San Francisco, CA 94158 415-230-6677 | 800-344-4867 Chairman • Thomas Galizia Newsletter Editor • Jennifer Gainza The National Multiple Sclerosis Society does not endorse products, services or manufacturers. Such names appear here solely because they are considered valuable information. The National Multiple Sclerosis Society assumes no liability for the use of contents of any product or service mentioned. Information provided by the Society is based upon professional advice, published experience and expert opinion. Information provided in response to questions does not constitute therapeutic recommendations or prescriptions. The National Multiple Sclerosis Society recommends that all questions and information be discussed with a personal physician. The National Multiple Sclerosis Society is dedicated to ending the devastating effects of MS. © 2009 National MS Society, Northern California Chapter

2

|

JOIN THE MOVEMENT: nationalMSsociety.org

BOARD OF TRUSTEES Board Officers Thomas M. Galizia, Chair Deloitte Consulting Angela E. Lai, Secretary Wells Fargo Private Client Services David Larson, Treasurer Piedmont Grocery Board Members Laura Black, Audit Chair Needham & Company Nancy Byl, Ph.D. UCSF Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science Jonah Chan, Ph.D. UCSF Department of Neurology C. Budd Colby, Ph.D. Colby Biomedical Consultants Elizabeth Crabtree-Hartman, MD UCSF MS Center, Department of Neurology Anthony DeLizza, Program Co-Chair First Light, LLC Michelle Dennedy Oracle Matt Frinzi Powervision, Inc. Douglas S. Goodin, MD UCSF MS Center David R. Hultman Bank of the West H. Penny Knuff Fiduciary Trust International of California Doug Richardson, Program Chair Chuck Robbins Cisco Systems John A. Schafer, MD Mercy Medical Group Dan Stokes JStokes & Associates Emeritus Board Members David Korn Fillmore Marks Gary Ryness


IN MEMORY

IN MEMORY OF ROSEMARIE JOHNSON – A CHAMPION FOR PEOPLE LIVING WITH MS 12/12/1957 -- 8/23/2010

We all have known someone who has left an indelible imprint on our lives. Rosemarie Johnson was such a person. In her capacity as Direct Services Coordinator at the National MS Society, Northern California Chapter, from 1995 until 2004, she dedicated her professional life to removing barriers so that people with MS would have an equal opportunity to secure employment, achieve economic independence and full social integration. Her community service was evident by the outpouring of love and support demonstrated during her memorial service this past September. Many people that day spoke about Rosie’s sense of hopefulness and joyful spirit. You always came away from speaking with her more focused on what was possible rather than fixating on the problem in your life. As Kim Douglas, her longtime friend and leader in the MS Community, exclaimed, “Rosemarie encouraged and educated me about MS and

showed me not just how to survive but how to live with it.” Whether helping someone file for social security benefits or obtain funding for durable medical equipment repairs, knowing she could make a difference in someone’s life brought her fulfillment. Among her many achievements at the Northern California Chapter, perhaps her proudest of all was serving as the catalyst for the formation of the African American SelfHelp Group. Along with help from Jane Burton Whitiker, and a few others, the group grew from 10 persons to a mailing list of over 200 persons. Jane credits Rosie with “teaching so many African Americans living with MS to better manage our lives, handle family situations and retain employment.” Rosie was all about family. She loved to tell proud stories of her beloved daughter, Tonisha and parents, Edward and Stella. While working at the National MS Society, she met her husband, Robert Sterling, and found new happiness in her life with Robert, his daughter Damara (who also has MS) and grandson, Jessie. In the last couple years of her life, with limited ability to travel, Rosie enjoyed visits from her sister, daughter, in-laws, family and friends. While they would all come to lift her spirits, it was Rosie, who before too long, would instigate laughter and bring smiles to the faces of anyone who came calling.

TOLL FREE NUMBER 1 800 344 4867

| 3


LIVING WITH MS

ONE STOP CAREER CENTERS FINDING COMMUNITY-BASED EMPLOYMENT SERVICES Many people with MS know that they might not be able to continue in their current career, but do not actively explore alternative careers in their industry where their skills might cross over. For someone living with multiple sclerosis, One Stop Career Centers are your most valuable and important resource in finding communitybased employment services, whether you need to find new work, or need to find more information about retraining or benefits. Due to the unpredictable nature of MS, it’s important to be proactive and become familiar with the employment services and resources in your community should your MS and your job take an unexpected turn. Your local One Stop Career Centers may participate in the Disability Navigator program in which a trained One Stop Career Center staff member can connect a person with disabilities to the varied resource they need related to employment or benefits information. Make sure to ask specifically for a Disability Navigator, as not all One Stop Career Centers have a Disability Navigator. If not, ask for services specific to helping people with disabilities. Whether or not you are looking for work, consider visiting your local One Stop Career Center. You can find more information about the One Stop Career Center system and your nearest One Stop at www.careeronestop.org.

4

|

JOIN THE MOVEMENT: nationalMSsociety.org

To learn more about MS and employment, please call 1-800-344-4867 or visit the website www.msconnection.org.

“RIGHT NOW IS PERFECT” Northern California resident Carol Ryan has recently written a memoir titled “Right Now is Perfect” which includes how she developed primary progressive MS at age 50 –after sailing across the Pacific. It gives one person’s account of being diagnosed and adjusting to a life of increasing disability (after a life of adventure and activity). The book is available as an e-book on Smashwords.com (you can download a free sample there) as well as a hard-copy book through most online retailers (Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Apple, Sony). For more information about Carol and her book, please visit www.RightNowIsPerfect.com.

CONNECT WITH US ON FACEBOOK! The Northern California Chapter of the National MS Society has over 1750 fans on Facebook - are you one of them? If not, become a fan today! The page offers a unique forum for people to connect, network and discuss everything from symptom managment to ways they’re supporting the movement. Connect with us today at www.facebook.com/msnortherncal


WAYS TO GIVE

CREATE A FUNDRAISER TO REMEMBER Did you know there are literally thousands of ways you can help? People who want to contribute to the mission to end MS are invited to dream up and produce original events that raise money for research and care. Every year, all over the country, volunteers organize and host golf, billiards and bowling tournaments, auctions and raffles, dinners, concerts, rummage sales, wine tastings, barbecues, motorcycle fun rides, skiing days and dances. Other events include a trap and skeet fun shoot, a bratwurst and bake sale, a boat show and a car show. A sailing party in Minnesota and the 7th Annual Bell Family Rabbit Hunt in Wisconsin each raised thousands of dollars. Holiday themes are also popular, such as Easter egg hunts or Halloween parties with a pay-

to-enter costume contest. The types of benefits to create are limited only by the imagination. “The idea is to turn someone’s passion into a fundraiser,” said Betty Ross, the Society’s associate vice president for Campaign Development. These events may raise anything from a few hundred to tens of thousands of dollars. There’s no minimum required and certainly no maximum, Ross said. And you don’t even have to create a brand-new event, she added. You can add a fundraising element to pretty much any existing occasion. How much time it takes to prepare depends on how elaborate the plans are. They can be as simple as asking friends to pay a few dollars at the door to attend a private party. On the other hand, a large-scale gala might take four to six months, or even longer, to plan. “We have a lot of cool Society events, but people have their own interests,” said Ross. “Community events reflect how you want to be involved.” Have a great idea? Call us and ask for the Community Event Organizer Guidelines and the Community Event Information Form, or enter “community event” as a search term at nationalMSsociety.org.

TOLL FREE NUMBER 1 800 344 4867

| 5


COMMUNITY EVENTS

OUTRUN MS LAGOON VALLEY

Initially, the Outrun MS committee’s fundraising efforts were centered on signing up friends and family to sponsor a walk or run—as much or as little as they liked—with the goal that Richard would never run alone. The Outrun MS committee quickly became ambitious, and before they knew it, the event had “morphed” into something bigger: corporate sponsorships; donations of merchandise for a raffle and silent auction; food and drink vendors; t-shirt sales; live bands; the donation of goods and services; and publicity—the result of a generous outpouring of support from their local communities.

RESEARCH

In September of 2009, Marta DiMichele Jacobs’ 28 year-old-daughter, Andrea, was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. The diagnosis was particularly devastating to Marta given the fact that Andrea and her husband, Andrew, were recently stationed in England—too great a distance to be of comfort or assistance to her daughter. Seeking ways to overcome her sense of helplessness, Marta wrote a message on her Facebook wall, asking people to support the National MS Society, Northern California Chapter. In April 2010, she was shocked to read a response from someone she had not spoken to in nearly 40 years.

form. Richard suggested a 24-hour event since running 50 two-mile loops around the Lagoon would take him throughout the night and early hours of the morning to finish.

Richard Burke graduated from Vacaville High School with Marta in 1971. A “I was just so humbled Outrun MS Lagoon Valley longtime marathon runner, he 2010 jumpstarted their by his ability and was looking for a reason to run fundraising efforts a few nights a 100-mile marathon when willingness to help the before the run with “Pasta he stumbled upon Marta’s MS cause.” Carb-Load Night”, a wellFacebook post. “Richard attended dine-and-donate volunteered to run 100 miles event at Pietro’s #2, a local in my daughter’s honor. I was just so humbled Italian restaurant. In addition to a percentage by his ability and willingness to help the MS of the proceeds from the dinner, the event cause,” said Marta. “It was immediately decided generated revenue through the sale of event that together we would coordinate a benefit t-shirts and raffle tickets. for multiple sclerosis.” By May 2010, plans for Outrun MS Lagoon Valley 2010 were taking 6

|

JOIN THE MOVEMENT: nationalMSsociety.org


COMMUNITY EVENTS

Outrun MS Lagoon Valley was held July we accomplished with the support of our 31-August 1, 2010 at Lagoon Valley Park, communities.” in Vacaville, CA, and was attended by Outrun MS Lagoon Valley raised $25,000, approximately 200 people. Although Richard’s money that will fund innovative programs and 100-mile quest was halted by a foot injury services and groundbreaking research for the after running 42 miles, other participants 84,000 Northern Californians affected by MS. completed the remaining 58 miles through the The Northern California Chapter is extremely early morning hours, cheered on by Richard grateful to Richard Burke, Marta DiMichele and supporters who camped overnight. As one Jacobs and the Outrun MS supporter commented, the “I could not be more committee for putting on sight of the Lagoon course a successful event. In lined with illuminated “Hero” proud of how much such fact, Outrun MS was such bags created “a very magical we accomplished with a success that planning atmosphere.”. is already underway for the support of our Genentech, a leader in MS Outrun MS 2011, scheduled committees.” research, which is located for June 11, 2011. in Vacaville, was Community events one of the event’s can be created by major sponsors, taking just about along with Sutter anything you Health, Walmart and are passionate Community Business about, and adding Bank. Generous a fundraising contributions of raffle element. Past and silent auction events have ranged merchandise and gift in scope from cards raised nearly lemonade stands, $4,000 and included to skydiving, drum a $500 Disneyland rolls, crab feeds, travel voucher donated by AAA, Andy Jacobs, Linda Burke, Richard Burke, and Marta DiMichele Jacobs car washes, and comedy shows. Vacaville. Are you interested in planning a fundraising “Coordinating Outrun MS Lagoon Valley event for the National MS Society? To learn was a lot of work, but so much fun and very more, please visit www.msconnection.org or gratifying,” said Marie Campanale, a long-time call the Northern California Chapter at 415friend of Marta’s and co-chair of the event. 230-6678. “I could not be more proud of how much TOLL FREE NUMBER 1 800 344 4867

| 7


Walk MS

The Rallying Point of the MS Movement

Register today for Walk MS: Northern California 2011 Visit us at walk.msconnection.org or call 800-344-4867.

If you want to go to bed at night with a feeling of self-satisfaction and GENUINE HAPPINESS, then participate in Walk MS! Vonnie V.

I have MS; it does not have me. I know people who say, “Why me?” But I say, “WHY NOT ME?” I have family and friends who give me great support. Jessica S.

I have had MS for 21 years. This April I will have done the walk for 21 years. Ususally, I WAS IN A WHEELCHAIR, but last year I actually walked to the first rest area. That was a very big accomplishment for me. Carol A.

Walk MS is a tremendous inspirational journey for me and my teammates. More so for me because I have been living with MS for 13 long years and I still keep truckin! Walk MS gives us patients, family, friends, and supporters a chance to ‘show the illness up...’ that you can NEVER take our walk away from us! THE STRENGTH AND POSITIVE ENERGY THAT FUELS WITHIN ME is from the sufferings of MS, but to only make me pursue Walk MS for the cure and for the people! Kristine D.

I have MS and I support the walk because I want to make sure RESEARCHERS HAVE THE FUNDS THEY NEED to keep working to find the cause and a cure ASAP. Carol K.


Yuba City

San Jose

San Francisco

When: Saturday, April 16 Where: Sam Brannan Park

When: Saturday, April 30 Where: Arena Green

When: Sunday, May 1 Where: Golden Gate Park

Santa Rosa

Folsom

Sacramento

When: Sunday, April 17 Where: Howarth Park

When: Saturday, April 30 Where: John Kemp Park

Walnut Creek

Modesto

When: Sunday, April 17 Where: Heather Farm Park

When: Saturday, April 30 Where: Downey Park

Monterey Bay

Eureka

When: Sunday, April 17 Where: Lover’s Point Park

When: Saturday, April 30 Where: Eureka High School

My husband Dan, who is on the Walk MS committee, suffers from MS. During my first walk eight years ago, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I became very emotional when I saw all the people from volunteers to walkers to their dogs! It was just heartwarming to know that there were so many others willing to help find a cure for this disease. I remember it was a beautiful spring day and the sun was shining, but I had TEARS IN MY EYES. I will never forget that walk. Someday, we will find a cure! Patti R. Laurie suffers with the disease, and I’m the one who suffers watching her in pain. I can’t do anything except rub her legs. BUT now I will do more, I WILL WALK IN WALK MS 2011. Ronnie O.

When: Sunday, May 1 Where: West Steps, State Capitol

Virtual Walker Can’t make it to one of our walks, but still want to raise funds for the 84,000 Northern Californians affected by MS? Go to walk.msconnection.org and sign up to be a virtual walker.

We walk for our daughter who has MS, as well as for our friends and those in the community. The best part about Walk MS is the ENTHUSIASM and JOY you see in people’s faces, knowing that what they are doing is for such a good cause. Mary C. I think the walk is a great event for all - even those who can’t participate in the walking part of it. I was diagnosed with MS in 2004 and find it helpful to meet others with MS WHO UNDERSTAND MY CHALLENGES (the ones that you can see, as well as the ones you can’t). Sue L.


LIVING WITH MS

LIVING WITH MS BY RON HAGELGANZ My wife, Lisa, likes to lift heavy objects. Not everyone’s cup of tea, but powerlifting is what she loves to do. In fact, in 2001, she set a world record in the World Association of Benchers and Deadlifters, the WABDL, in both bench press (with 176.2 pounds) and deadlift (319.5), where she squats to lift the weighted bar off the floor, holds it and puts it down again with good control. Then came a car accident, brain surgery, and in 2006 a diagnosis of MS. She now uses a walker to get around, but Lisa never gave up her dream of lifting again. Last year she asked her neurologist if lifting could do her any harm. He gave her the go-ahead, and we got a day pass to the local YMCA. I got her on a bench, loaded up some plates and she did it! Next I found a nice used bench with weights and brought it home so Lisa could start training again. Because of the MS, deadlifting is out, but bench press is OK, as long as she’s having a good day. She was excited that she could do it, even with her restricted walking, and very happy to be doing something she could be good at again. Then Lisa found that the WABDL has a disabled division. That meant she could actually compete! So in March 2010, at age 55, nine years to the month after her last competition, my nervous, prayerful and very thankful wife

10 |

JOIN THE MOVEMENT: nationalMSsociety.org

Lisa’s record-setting lift of 132.2 pounds.

competed in the WABDL Goodson Honda National Championships in Portland, Ore. She set a new state record in bench press with her very first lift, and continued to reset the record in her next three lifts, finishing with 132.2 pounds. The next-best state record in the disabled division is 82.5 pounds, so she’s doing really well. And you know, I think she’s just getting started! In fact, it wouldn’t surprise me to one day see her beat her pre-MS record. I know she’s prouder of just being able to lift than of any of her old records. Not bad for an ol’ gal with MS, huh?

There are many sports and competitions that have been adapted for people with disabilities. Visit nationalMSsociety.org and type “adapted sports” in the search box, or call us. Lisa and Ron Hagelganz live in Vancouver, Wash.


LEARN ABOUT MS

LEARN ABOUT MS— ANYTIME

side effects. There are more than 50 other Learn Online videos available. Transcripts (.pdf format) and podcasts (.mp3 audio format) are available for most programs. RESEARCH

Correspondents who interview the MS experts not only have a professional background in broadcasting, they have MS themselves. “So what they want to know is often what other people with MS want to know,” said Julie Gibson, special projects consultant for the Society.

Dr. Aaron Miller discusses Gilenya, the first FDAapproved oral therapy for MS.

For 10 years, MS Learn Online has provided educational webcasts, featuring health professionals from all over North America, accessible at nationalMSsociety.org/ mslearnonline any time, day or night. A recent feature presentation is “Getting a Good Night’s Sleep with MS,” in which Rock Heyman, MD, chief of the division of Neuroimmunology and director of the MS Center, the University of Pittsburgh, explains why people with MS seem to be more prone to sleep disorders. He has some tips for dealing with the problem. Another new presentation is on Gilenya, the first oral disease-modifying therapy to be FDA-approved. Aaron Miller, MD, professor of neurology at Mount Sinai and medical director at the Corinne Goldsmith Dickinson Center for Multiple Sclerosis in New York City, discusses Gilenya in two sessions covering how it works, who might benefit, pros, cons and potential

Sign up at nationalmssociety.org/ mslearnonline to receive an e-mail whenever a new webcast debuts.

Explore Learn Online videos online: Basic Facts of MS, Treatments, Symptom Management, Healthy Living, Progressive MS, Research, Family Life and Relationships, Employment and Insurance, and En Español. On the first and third Thursdays of each month, two new videos are added. An update on disease-modifying therapy is generally added once a year. In a hurry? Visit Daily Minutes. In 60 seconds you’ll get some basics on Who Gets MS, What is Myelin, What is Relapsing-Remitting MS– and more. Click on the Daily Minute link in the blue box at nationalMSsociety.org/ mslearnonline.

TOLL FREE NUMBER 1 800 344 4867

| 11


NEWS

VISIONS OF TECHNOLOGICAL EQUALITY The da Vinci Awards for Accessibility and Universal Design are given annually for innovations in technologies that enable equal access and opportunity for all people, including those with disabilities. (R-TX) At a gala event in September at the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Mich., awards were presented for: • Hands-free speech recognition. VoicePower Ultimate makes speech recognition more productive for users with limited hand function. • A mobility vehicle. The MV-1 is the firstever vehicle designed from the ground up for wheelchair users. An MV-1 in a taxi fleet, for example, would make traveling easier for many. • An accessible park. Francis Motz County Park, in Michigan. • Music for everyone. Virtual Music Instrument software allows people with limited movement to create music by manipulating onscreen blocks of color. • Tongue-operated technology. The Tongue Drive System is a wireless and wearable technology that allows people to control computers, wheelchairs, cell phones and home appliances. Proceeds from corporate sponsorships and the gala raised almost $135,000 for the Michigan Chapter of the Society. Learn more at youtube.com/davinciawards.

12 |

JOIN THE MOVEMENT: nationalMSsociety.org

A 42-acre outdoor recreational area with wheelchairaccessible picnic tables, food service areas, barbeque grills and bathrooms in Michigan.

MS Awareness Week March 14-20, 2011! This is our national effort to bring about understanding of MS and the people affected by it. To get involved, go to nationalMSsociety.org/msawarenessweek and call us for events in this area.

THE NORTH AMERICAN EDUCATION PROGRAM Our annual North American Education Program includes a video and book focusing on an MS topic. The current NAEP material, called Who? Why? How? — Searching for the Cause of MS, includes discussions with leading medical researchers on the causes of MS and how these efforts may lead to treatments and even finding a cure. Call us for a copy.


RESEARCH

THE WORLD OF MS RESEARCH In October, more than 5,500 neurologists and other investigators from around the world covered almost every aspect of current MS research in some 900 scientific presentations and posters at the annual ECTRIMS (European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis) conference in Gothenberg, Sweden.

In a separate session, Dr. Antonio Uccelli of the University of Genoa described attempts to stop MS progression using infusions of an individual’s own bone marrow or blood stem cells (mesenchymal cells). Dr. Uccelli is now collaborating on a study that he hopes will show that these cells are beneficial. Restoring function

Several research teams reported progress in improving quality of life and specific symptoms, including fatigue and mobility issues, through group physical therapy, and Some research highlights supervised aerobics, yoga and resistance training classes. Another study suggested that memory A newly completed two-year, phase III trial of training can improve brain function. Many teriflunomide, an oral compound that inhibits reports focused on CCSVI specific immune cells, Two different doses of (chronic cerebrospinal venous in 1,088 people with relapsing MS, found teriflunomide significantly insufficiency), with mixed conflicting results. Lab positive results. Dr. Paul reduced the rate of MS or studies identified additional O’Connor of the University relapses by up to 31.5% molecules that may block the of Toronto reported that two different doses of compared to placebo, and ability of myelin-making cells to repair damage caused by teriflunomide significantly the higher dose reduced the MS; selectively turning them off reduced the rate of MS risk of disability progression could be useful for encouraging relapses by up to 31.5% myelin repair in people with compared to placebo, by 29.8%. MS. and that the higher dose reduced the risk of disability progression by Risk factors 29.8%. It also reduced the risk of new MS lesions and reduced disease activity. Additional clinical Dr. Trond Riise of the University of Bergen trials are under way. reviewed the growing list of factors that may contribute to an individual’s susceptibility to Other medications also show promise at various developing MS, and pointed to current studies trial stages. An oral compound called firategrast that may lead to a better understanding of the caused a significant decrease in the rate of new interactions and variations of these multiple risk MRI-detected lesions in a six-month trial in factors. relapsing-remitting MS. Ocrelizumab, which targets and kills immune B cells, reduced new For a more complete report on the conference, lesions by at least 89% over placebo in a 24-week search “ECTRIMS” at nationalmssociety.org. trial. TOLL FREE NUMBER 1 800 344 4867

| 13


MONEY MATTERS

THE FIRST STEPS TO SMART MONEY MANAGEMENT BY REBECCA A. CLAY Financial planning is crucial for people with MS and their families: As the disease continues, expenses tend to grow which may bring difficult financial choices. Early planning can help. Get started: Call us Begin by calling 1-800-3444867 to connect with an MS Navigator™. This highly trained professional can refer you to service providers who can help you address issues like health insurance, employment and taxes.

One key resource the Navigator will recommend is a brochure called Adapting: Financial Planning for a Life with Multiple Sclerosis. Full of worksheets, tips, and references, the 72page publication is an overview of your financial options. The Navigator can mail you a free copy, or you can download it at nationalmssociety. org/financialplanning. Finally: Talk to a professional You may need more specific information, which means consulting one-on-one with a financial planning professional. Through the Society’s partnership with the Society of Financial Service Professionals (SFSP), the Financial Education Partners |

In this program, you receive advice during a telephone session with a volunteer from SFSP’s membership. These volunteers are certified public accountants, attorneys, or other professionals. The more honest and open you are the more your advisor can help. Sessions are completely confidential, and the volunteers are not there to sell you anything but to share their financial knowledge. Be aware that the program cannot help with crisis needs, such as foreclosure assistance. It is not a funding source and offers no programs for indigent care. The idea is to help you forge a workable plan to prevent crises from occurring in the future.

Forge a workable plan to prevent crises like foreclosure from occurring.

Next: Read up

14

Program provides free personal counseling.

JOIN THE MOVEMENT: nationalMSsociety.org

While the advisor can’t serve as a long-term advisor, he or she can get you started toward whatever your financial goals might be. Rebecca A. Clay is an award-winning writer in Washington, DC. She specializes in health issues.

FREE TAX PREPARATION SERVICES The IRS will help you prepare tax returns. The online Interactive Tax Assistant answers questions about deductions, eligibility for credit and more. For those who qualify, the IRS’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program offers free tax help by certified volunteers. Call 1-800906-9887. For general information, go to www.irs.gov or the IRS general number, 1-800-829-1040.


EVENTS

BIKE MS: WAVES TO WINE 2010 Bike MS: Waves to Wine Ride 2010 was a huge success! We had over 2,000 cyclists on the road and raised $1.94 million, money that will fund groundbreaking research and innovative programs and services for the 84,000 Northern Californians affected by MS. It was a great weekend with perfect weather. Thank you to our cyclists, 700+ volunteers, and sponsors who helped make Bike MS: Waves to Wine Ride 2010 such a success!

2010 TOP FUNDRAISERS Individuals 1. David Patterson $29,390.00 2. Kate Aks $25,677.00 3. Greg Kleiman $13,386.00 4. Thomas Galizia $12,151.00 5. Randi Bethel $11,013.65

Teams 1. Team Chevron $105,271.02 2. Team Menstrual Cycles $92,017.96 3. Salesforce.com & Friends $60,305.00 4. Mitzvah Milers $50,619.00 5. Deloitte Difference $43,705.18

THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS!

Bay Area Development, Schwab, Teva Neuroscience, and Maxim TOLL FREE NUMBER 1 800 344 4867

| 15


NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATION U.S. POSTAGE PAID San Francisco, CA Permit #160

Northern California Chapter 1700 Owens Street, Suite 190 San Francisco, CA 94158


MS Connection Winter 2011