CHEST Foundation Celebrates 25th Anniversary
For a long time, the CHEST Foundation was identified by what we did — give grants. Then, we were described by who we were — patient educators, community event planners, and clinical researchers. Now, as we mark 25 years of stewardship, in a moment when racial disparities become more evident in our underserved communities, and a lung health crisis threatens every aspect of our lives, we know exactly who we are being called to be.
AN IDENTITY SHIFT
Like many philanthropic arms of medical societies, the CHEST Foundation was founded on the premise of delivering grants to its members, and we awarded more than 30 in our inaugural year. Funding clinical research, world health partnerships, and lectureships constituted our identity for a very long time. It served us well in supporting the overall mission of CHEST, which is an organization that invests in community research. Our first evolution was prompted several years ago when CHEST decided to prioritize patient education, supporting new community-centric initiatives that would be spearheaded by the Foundation. Within a short amount of time, we began to develop patient and caregiver resources that were previously outside our realm, becoming true advocates by:
- Creating engaging tobacco cessation and educational programming to help eliminate tobacco use
- Founding the Critical Care Family Assistance Program (CCFAP) to provide for the unmet needs of families of critically ill patients in hospital ICUs
- Launching the “Beyond Our Walls” campaign to support CHEST’s Simulation Center to train to patient-centered care
- Partnering with the Popovich family to secure a substantial ILD endowment
- Funding COVID-19 microgrants aimed at community outreach supplying food, masks, oximeters, and supplies
- Launching a Listening Tour campaign to address health disparities in underserved communities
- Producing a complimentary oxygen toolkit enabling patients to have informed conversations with their clinicians
WHO ARE WE NOW?
After 25 years of listening and learning, we’re proud to say that we’ve evolved into conversation starters, access granters, community activists, and change makers. We’ve changed a lot over the past 2 decades and so has lung disease awareness. That’s why this anniversary is so important. It’s not just to celebrate the past or say “well done.” It’s to take this opportunity to highlight all our past accomplishments, what we call our building blocks, to create a solid foundation and vision for the future. What we learn when delivering care packages during a pandemic, what we hear patients say during a listening tour, and what caregivers look for when visiting our patient hub – this is how we will gather the knowledge we need to define who we are moving forward.
TRAILBLAZING INTO THE FUTURE
Our anniversary theme is “Leaders of the past. Trailblazers of the future.” It may sound like a snappy phrase, but we take it very seriously. “Without the vision, guidance, and support of our leaders, much of the work we’ve done wouldn’t have been possible. They are our champions and carried our torch for a very long time. Looking to the future, we’re excited to welcome new torch carriers who we can partner with to propel us into a new era of philanthropic work,” stated Rudy Anderson, CAE, Executive Director of the CHEST Foundation.
AWARDING $200,000 annually in collaborative diversity grants and community-focused programming
ESTABLISHING “Rita’s Fund,” an initiative to support marginalized patients who can’t afford proper care
EXPANDING access to oxygen therapy and pulmonary rehab through a telemedicine pilot program
PARTICIPATING in more advocacy efforts by developing policy statements from our tobacco experts It’s time to remember the past. It’s time to celebrate the present. And it’s time to blaze into the future.
We hope you’ll join us. Visit chestfoundation.org/25th-anniversary to discover all the ways we’re marking this historic occasion.
OTHER ARTICLES IN THIS ISSUE
WHAT WE LEARN FROM LISTENING
INSIGHTS FROM THE CHEST FOUNDATION LISTENING TOUR
A year after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and more than 550,000 US deaths later, the picture of lung health is forever changed with COVID survivors at an increased potential for long-term effects from the virus.
8 MINUTE READ
LONG ROAD TO BREAKING DOWN BARRIERS
When Alvin V. Thomas Jr., MD, FCCP, accepted the CHEST presidency in 2007, he had a mission in mind, one that he had been formulating for a long time. His goal was to highlight health care disparities and raise the consciousness of his colleagues to an issue that was affecting large communities of people suffering with lung disease.
3 MINUTE READ
IT’S TIME TO CELEBRATE!
To celebrate our 25th Anniversary, we’re hosting a variety of fun and entertaining virtual events. Remember, the funds raised from our events go directly toward advancing our programming, so you won’t only be enjoying a unique activity, you’ll also be helping fight lung disease! To register, visit chestfoundation.org/news-and-events/.
1 MINUTE READ
ILD INFORMATION AT YOUR FINGERTIPS
The newest resource available for patients and caregivers is the “Living With Interstitial Lung Disease” patient guide. This 52-page resource is the most comprehensive patient-education tool available on ILD.
1 MINUTE READ
The Donor Spotlight April 2021 issue is also available as a PDF Download the PDF»