MDA For Strength Independence & Life

About MDA

Fighting every day to free individuals — and the families who love them — from the harmful effects of muscle-debilitating diseases so they can live longer and grow stronger

FAQs

  • What does MDA do?

    MDA is leading the fight to free individuals — and the families who love them — from the harm of muscular dystrophy, ALS and related muscle-debilitating diseases that take away physical strength, independence and life. We use our collective strength to help kids and adults live longer and grow stronger by finding research breakthroughs across diseases; caring for individuals from day one; and empowering families with services and support in hometowns across America.

  • How do I find my local MDA office or clinic?

    To locate your closest MDA office or Care Center, enter your ZIP code in our ZIP code locator, or call (800) 572-1717.

  • How can I receive MDA services?

    Contact your local MDA office to register with us for free. Registered individuals have access to our nationwide network of Care Centers, Summer Camps for kids ages 6 to 17, support groups, equipment assistance, educational programs, our Quest Magazine and more. We are here to help you when and where you need us.

  • What diseases are in MDA’s program?

    MDA is dedicated to finding treatments and cures for muscular dystrophy, ALS and numerous related muscle-debilitating diseases that take away physical strength and mobility. To see a list of diseases and learn more about each, visit our disease directory.

  • How does MDA spend the money it raises?

    MDA is funded almost entirely by individual private contributions and generous corporate sponsors and organizations. We also host numerous events nationwide, such as our Muscle Walk, Lock-Ups and Team Momentum endurance program, in which dedicated supporters raise money in their communities to support our fight. 

    MDA uses every dollar we raise wisely to ensure it has the greatest impact for the families we serve. We dedicate 74 cents of every dollar we raise directly to research, services and education. The remaining funds go to helping us support our incredible staff and events that make the work we do for families possible. You can read more details in our MDA Annual Report online, including a complete financial report.

  • How does MDA support neuromuscular disease research?

    At MDA, we take a big-picture perspective across the full spectrum of neuromuscular diseases to uncover breakthroughs that accelerate treatments and cures. The power in our research approach is that we can often apply learnings from one disease to achieve progress in others to bring urgently needed answers to our families. As the world’s largest private-sector supporter of neuromuscular disease research, we fund about 200 research projects each year in a dozen countries.

    MDA awards new grants twice a year. To see the current research projects we are funding, check out our research grants section. Our translational research program represents an innovative way to fund research that’s designed to move new drug targets into the clinic as rapidly and efficiently as possible. MDA training grants attract new talent into the area of neuromuscular research.

    MDA is also working to accelerate the development of treatments and cures by sponsoring national and international scientific conferences every other year, which bring about 500 research experts together to facilitate collaboration, idea sharing and progress.

  • What programs and services does MDA offer to families?

    Every year, 35,000 kids and adults receive treatment at MDA's nationwide network of more than 150 MDA Care Centers, including 44 MDA ALS Care Centers. Here, we provide comprehensive, expert care from neuromuscular disease specialists in one place, at one time. MDA also provides annual occupational, physical, respiratory and speech therapy consultations.

    Each year, MDA hosts more than 3,800 children with muscular dystrophy and related diseases at our nearly 75 week-long Summer Camps. At no cost to their families, kids experience the best week of the year where barriers and limits don't exist. They enjoy activities like swimming, fishing, horsebackriding, crafts and much more while gaining self-confidence, life-long friendships and independence. Each child is paired with a trained volunteer, and medical volunteers are on-hand to assist with any needs that may arise during the week. It is a life-changing experience for kids and volunteers.

    MDA provides assistance with durable medical equipment to help individuals maintain their independence. We also offer ongoing public health education programs and assistance with flu vaccines.

    The MDA Transitions Program and Transitions Center are focused on empowering a new generation of young adults who — thanks to medical and technological advances — are living into adulthood.

  • How can I receive a copy of MDA's Quest Magazine?

    MDA publishes our award-winning quarterly print magazine Quest, which is available online with searchable archives. The magazine carries detailed articles about current research, medical care, helpful products, social and family issues, inspiring first-person stories and daily living tips.

    Individuals who are registered with MDA receive Quest via mail free of charge. 

    As an added bonus, Quest Magazine online offers all content that's available in the print magazine, as well as special online-only features and articles related to stories in the print magazine. 

  • Does MDA have an advocacy program?

    Yes. MDA’s national advocacy office in Washington, D.C., works year-round to keep the needs of families and the MDA community a top priority for policymakers who craft legislation, research priorities and health policy. MDA advocates use their collective strength to inform and educate legislators on important issues.

    Through collaborative efforts with federal agencies and other organizations, MDA is working to both accelerate therapy development and expand resources for families affected by neuromuscular diseases and disabilities.

  • How can I get involved in helping MDA?

    There are many ways to support MDA and the families we serve that are as unique and diverse as your interests and talents. From participating in a local event in your community, serving on a volunteer committee, being a camp counselor at one of our Summer Camps or setting up your own fundraising event, we need passionate supporters like you to bring urgent progress to our families. Please visit our Get Involved section to find the right opportunity for you.

    And of course, please feel free to make a donation right now!

  • How can my business or organization support MDA’s lifesaving mission?

    A vital part of MDA’s financial support comes from strong partnerships — some decades old — with generous local, regional and national sponsors. Our corporate alliance team would love to talk with you about your enthusiasm for MDA and how we could work together to make a significant difference for families who need us that also advances your bottom line. To learn about partnership opportunities and to contact us, please visit our Become a Partner page.

  • In addition to making a donation online, what other options do I have to support MDA?

    To leave a lasting legacy on the fight against muscular dystrophy and to support your family, special gifts to MDA through planned giving vehicles are possible, including bequests, annuities and trusts. To learn more about potential options that are right for you and your family, contact Jade Bristol-Verity, Esq. National Vice President of Legacy Gifts at 301-575-6891 or jverity@mdausa.org.

    MDA offers a time-saving monthly giving program in which participants designate a pledge that automatically is charged to a credit/debit card every month.

    Many employers sponsor matching gift programs and will match charitable contributions made by their employees. To find out if your company has a matching gift policy, please visit our matching gifts page. The impact of your gift can go twice as far!

    To learn more about other ways to give back to MDA, visit our Get Involved section.

  • Whom should I contact to get official information about MDA and its events and programs?

    Contact MDA's public relations department at (520) 529-5317 or email publicrelations@mdausa.org for assistance with:

    • a local or national story about MDA;
    • information about any of our lifesaving research and treatments;
    • a story about an MDA family or our treatment protocols;
    • interviews with one of our scientific experts on any of the diseases in MDA's program;
    • an official statement about MDA; and
    • general questions about MDA.

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