In 2012, The MAX Foundation awarded four grants to selected patient support groups and oncology centers in emerging countries. The Association for Health Promotion and Social Well-Being in Togo (APSBES) was amongst the four finalists selected. The grants in the amount of US $4,000.00 allowed APSBES to carry out a Pilot Project on Hand Washing in Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Lomé (CHU Lomé) as a measure for infection control in the Department of Pediatric Oncology.
Read more to find out how the project in Togo has evolved to help children undergoing cancer treatment at APSBES.
Posted by Danielle Matia on May 23, 2013 | Comments: 0
It was my first trip to CML Horizons, a conference organized annually by the CML Advocates Network. For those of you new to the CML Advocates Network, it is an international network of CML patient group organizers. Initiated in 2007, the CML Advocates Network provided patient advocates a forum in which to network, share information, and find support groups regardless of geographic distances. Each year they host a conference for the community of CML patient leaders, which features medical updates, best practice sharing, and advocacy training.
Click here for a link to archived video presentations from CML Horizons.
In this blog, I have shared lessons learned and tips from this informative and highly engaging conference.
Posted by Ann Novakowski on May 20, 2013 | Comments: 0
As a tribute to mothers around the world, the 2013 Colors of Hope Art Collection currently features artwork from individuals affected by cancer, reflecting the universally meaningful impact of mothers. The myriad of themes reflected in these pieces, from nurturer, to defender, to a beacon of hope and strength, illustrates the critical role of mothers and motherhood throughout the world and celebrates the beauty and strength that they bring to our lives.
Posted by Erin L. Schneider on May 10, 2013 | Comments: 0
Volunteers, patient groups and MAX Foundation representatives are gearing up around the world in preparation for the 2013 Maximize Life Global Cancer Awareness Campaign. This year’s theme is: “This is OUR story! Because cancer touches everyone”. Requests for proposals for the 2013 Maximize Life Global Cancer Awareness Campaign are officially open! Join the campaign by organizing an event, and raise awareness about cancer in your community. The deadline to submit proposals is June 17th!
Posted by Erin L. Schneider on May 06, 2013 | Comments: 0
Distinguished award for supporting international cancer patients highlights the importance of equal access to treatment for people with cancer, no matter where you live
The Above and Beyond Cancer Award was given to The MAX Foundation (MAX), in partnership with Novartis Oncology, for dedication to elevating the lives of those touched by cancer to create a healthier world. The collaboration among these global organizations to help international patients exemplifies the benefits of partnering, as well as the value of access to treatment for people living with cancer in low and middle income countries. This award, tied to the story of a patient in Nepal who is a courageous mountaineer that benefitted from a global access program for treatment of leukemia, is one that resonates because it represents the difference between giving up your life because of cancer and maximizing your life with cancer.
Click on 'Read More' for the full media release!
Posted by Danielle Matia on April 29, 2013 | Comments: 0
Pat Garcia-Gonzalez shares her statement, on behalf of The MAX Foundation, in reply to article published in the Blood Journal, April 25th entitled, “The Price of Drugs for Chronic Myeloid Leukemia (CML); A Reflection of the Unsustainable Prices of Cancer Drugs: From the Perspective of a Large Group of CML Experts”.
I would like to thank the authors of the article published in the Blood Journal, April 25th entitled, “The Price of Drugs for Chronic Myeloid Leukemia (CML); A Reflection of the Unsustainable Prices of Cancer Drugs: From the Perspective of a Large Group of CML Experts”, for their commitment to the well-being of their patients; a commitment we have seen first-hand.
In the article, the authors call attention to how drug prices are quite daunting with most targeted therapies at an annual cost of more than 100,000 US dollars per year. With that in mind, I support their call for a dialogue; we need to work together and certainly industry must be part of the discussion. However, it is my belief that unless we are able to look more broadly at the larger issue of access to treatment, we might not reach a result that will help patients today. I propose that we elevate the conversation to considering access to treatment in its full complexity and the role of pricing within this larger context...
Click Read More to read Pat's complete message.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on April 26, 2013 | Comments: 1
The MAX Foundation (MAX) has now posted an archive of the webinar presentation prepared for MAX global advocates by Dr. Michael Mauro of the Knight Cancer Institute at OHSU on the topic of management of Iclusig, the latest TKI approved for CML in the US, created by Ariad.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on April 24, 2013 | Comments: 0
In 2012, The MAX Foundation issued a challenge to patient associations worldwide to “Stomp Out Cancer”!
Patient associations took up this challenge and their groups got moving with such activities as ZUMBA in Nicaragua and Philippines, a bike ride in Kenya, an awareness walk in India and Nepal, and yoga in Mexico.
In the US, a student representative from James Madison University also took up our challenge. Armed with a personal passion and drive to raise awareness, he set about to bring “Stomp Out Cancer” to other students on campus.
Read on for a delightful interview we had with Kevin and to learn more about their board game-inspired activities…
Posted by Ann Novakowski on April 23, 2013 | Comments: 0
In the last 24 hours, The MAX Foundation has received numerous calls and emails from concerned patients regarding the implications of the recent ruling by the Supreme Court of India. We continue to advise those inquiring that we have no indication of any changes in Novartis’ Glivec International Patient Assistance Program (GIPAP) or the Novartis Oncology Access (NOA) program related to the India Supreme Court decision.
Novartis has been a sincere partner of people living with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) and gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST) for the past 10 years. We have seen first-hand the benefits of programs such as Novartis’ Glivec International Patient Assistance Program (GIPAP) and other Novartis access programs. The MAX Foundation is committed to supporting, facilitating and creating sustainable channels of access to treatment. We welcome any access solutions for good quality drugs from any company with the goal of sustainable and quality treatment for patients everywhere.
We applaud the global dialogue regarding this complex issue which sheds light on the heavy burden of cancer in emerging countries.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on April 02, 2013 | Comments: 6
We are pleased to introduce you to a knitting and crocheting group in Mt. Vernon, Washington that participates in “With LOVE in Every Stitch”, a MAX project whereby hats are made for children going through cancer treatment in low and middle income countries. We spoke with Martha, a member of the group, which is one of our most prolific in hat making. Since they began contributing to “With Love in Every Stitch”, Martha and her friends have donated over 80 hats to this cause!
Read on to hear more about this group and to learn how you can send your hats to The MAX Foundation for children facing cancer around the world.
Posted by Guest Blogger on March 28, 2013 | Comments: 0
The 2013 Colors of Hope Art Collection has officially begun, and several MaxStations have already started collecting artwork! The deadline to submit artwork is May 31st and fast approaching. Submit your artwork today! Artists will also have their work featured in our online Colors of Hope Art Gallery.
Posted by Erin L. Schneider on March 25, 2013 | Comments: 0
March 9th marks the day Max laid down his battle with cancer. It was 22 year ago, yet the wounds are still fresh and the pain quite real. This day is a reminder that cancer is a ruthless enemy willing to attack the youngest, the purest and just about anyone, anywhere and at any time.
United with survivors and those left behind, we defeat cancer by not allowing it to crush our heart or kill our spirits. Cancer thought it was taking Max away, yet, quite the contrary, today he lives in the hearts of thousands of people around the world. Cancer thought it was preventing Max from growing up and becoming a positive influence in his community. Yet today Max is a worldwide agent of hope.
To make a donation in honor of Max or your loved one, click here.
We would love to hear from you, our brothers and sisters; our partners in life. Click here to Sign the Guestbook.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on March 07, 2013 | Comments: 23
Valentine’s Day is the time of the year that people show their care and affection to their loves ones. We celebrate it in so many ways worldwide. We show our love by giving gifts, greeting cards, flowers or chocolates on this special occasion. But Touched by Max (TBM), the local patient support group for people living with CML and GIST in the Philippines had a different and even sweeter and much more practical way to celebrate in mind...
Read the full blog by Nelia, MaxStation in the Philippines to hear how their group of volunteers spent their day honoring children with cancer.
Posted by Nelia Medina on February 22, 2013 | Comments: 2
Touched By Max (TBM) is a patient group that works very closely with our MaxStation in the Philippines to address the biological and psychosocial needs of CML and GIST patients and their families. In honor of National Cancer Awareness Week in January, the TBM team organized a trip to visit to The Reception Study Center for Children (RSCC), which is a state run orphanage for young children who have either lost a their parents due to illness or have been abandoned. The group brought donations of children’s clothing and fabric softeners in an effort to support the orphanage and learn more about the needs of parentless children in the Philippines.
Click 'Read More' to go to the blog written by Rod, the President of Touched By Max, as he tells about his experience visiting The Reception Study Center for Children, a state run orphanage for abandoned children.
Posted by Guest Blogger on February 15, 2013 | Comments: 0
Show your love by sending a Valentine’s Day E-card with the opportunity to make a donation in honor of your loved one! Choose from our collection of Valentine’s Day themed art E-cards, created using artwork from the Colors of Hope Art Collection. All of the heart designed art is from the 2012 art submissions, with paintings by cancer survivors from Latin America to Asia Pacific.
Send your Valentine now!
By sending an E-card, you have the opportunity to donate funds to support diagnostic testing. If you make the gift in someone’s honor, you can then send them a Valentine’s Day E-card to let them know about your gift. Every $50.00 raised will sponsor testing for one patient. Any amount you can contribute will help support access to life-saving treatment.
If you are unable to give funds directly today, please consider sending an E-card to friends and family members who may be interested in supporting the cause.
Thank you, in advance, for helping patients worldwide to achieve early diagnosis, no matter where they live.
Happy Valentine’s Day!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on February 12, 2013 | Comments: 0
In honor of World Cancer Day 2013, MAX is excited to present a collection of more than 85 personal video messages featuring MAX team members, patient leaders, friends, and cancer survivors around the world answering: “What does World Cancer Day mean to you?”
Click here to visit the MAX YouTube Channel to view the video collection!
Please take a few minutes on February 4th to listen to our messages and, if you are inspired, we invite you to submit your own entry to firstname.lastname@example.org.
In order to raise even more awareness around the need for global cancer control, feel free to post and share these video on your Facebook page and through Twitter!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on February 05, 2013 | Comments: 0
World Cancer Day is making its way around the world. We have already seen great social media posts from friends near and far as everyone comes together to honor the day and re-commit to our goal of achieving a cancer-free world. The reality is that we need to come together everyday for cancer control!
MAX has received video messages from friends around the world expressing what World Cancer Day means to them. For so many of us, it is a time to show gratitude that we are able to LIVE with dignity with cancer, send our messages of strength to other survivors, and share how we plan to make a difference in the fight against cancer. Watch our MAX video series today! After watching, we encourage you to tweet, Facebook or share directly via YouTube so that these messages are heard across the world!
Click "Read More" to find out how you can take action on World Cancer Day!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on February 04, 2013 | Comments: 0
In honor of Martin Luther King Day in the US on January 21st which was proclaimed a National Day of Service, the Max Global team dedicated the day to knitting hats for our “With Love in Every Stitch” program, benefitting young cancer survivors around the world.
Posted by Erin L. Schneider on January 24, 2013 | Comments: 0
Each year during the American Society of Hematology (ASH) congress, our friends at the CML Advocates Network, Jan Geissler and Giora Sharf diligently attend as many CML related sessions as possible. As a team, they take down notes and then compile their thoughts in a report shared among the CML community.
Their informative 2012 ASH report can be accessed by following this link: http://www.cmladvocates.net/news/3-news/newsflash/220-ash2012-report.
Thanks to other advocates within the community, the report has already been translated into German, Russian, Hebrew and Chinese. Once you click on the link to the full report at the CML Advocates website, the links to the translated reports can be found on the right hand side of the page. The community welcomes translations of the report into as many languages as possible, so feel free to reach out to them if you wish to help.
Thanks to Jan and Giora, for their insights and commitment to information sharing!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on January 16, 2013 | Comments: 0
Dear friends around the world,
It is not too late to give: Donate today!
As we prepare to welcome the New Year, please help us to make 2013 the year that enables friends in need to receive an early diagnosis. By supporting this year's MAX Giving Campaign, you are making it possible for people around the world to access diagnostic testing that can save lives. For each $50.00 raised, a patient will be able to get the diagnostic test they need through MAX.
Looking forward to a year of health and wellness for friends everywhere. Please join us in making this possible for people with cancer, no matter where they live.
Happy New Year,
Your friends at MAX
Posted by Erin Schwartz on December 31, 2012 | Comments: 1
This art, titled, “My Present” was created by Fan, cancer survivor, advocate, and leader from Malaysia. Today, as we move into the New Year, we would like to share “our present” with you: a moving story we received this morning from one of our global team members. As a preview of our upcoming series in Advocacy in Action, please read Wirat’s post, in his own words.
December 28, 2012. "This was last working day for me in the office for the year 2012. I was standing by alone in the office, busying working pick up and making phone calls, trying to clear all the patient cases before the long holiday...
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on December 28, 2012 | Comments: 0
There is still time to show your appreciation to your loved ones this holiday season. Look no further than the MAX E-holiday card series! It is a wonderful way to show your affection, while honoring the courage of people living with cancer. The Maximize Life holiday art series is a unique selection of art from cancer survivors around the world. With our user-friendly customizable tool you can write a unique message in your card for each recipient.
About the art~ “The light of awareness” was painted by Devaditya, a young cancer survivor in India. Artist’s Descrption: Depicted the sun as The Max Foundation who removes darkness of cancer & brings new light to millions of patient everyday.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on December 23, 2012 | Comments: 0
The '2012 edition' of the iCMLf Virtual Education Program (VEP), developed in partnership with The MAX Foundation, was launched at the iCMLf Forum at ASH 2012 in Atlanta and is now available online.
All modules are available here (2012, 2011 and 2010)
The eLearning program offers educational presentations by leading CML experts. The webcasts address practical aspects of the management of CML, e.g. first line treatment, managing resistance, treatment of advanced phase CML, molecular monitoring and mutation testing, bone marrow transplant, etc. VEP updates for this year include video presentations by doctors Jane Apperley, Delphine Réa and Jorge Cortes in English, French and Spanish.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on December 21, 2012 | Comments: 0
Choose from our gallery of art E-cards, created from artwork collected through the Maximize Life Art Project to send your holiday greetings. By sending an E-card, you have the opportunity to donate funds to support live-saving diagnostic testing. If you make the gift in someone’s honor, you can then send them an E-card to let them know about your gift. If you are unable to give funds directly today, please consider sending an E-card to friends and family members who may be interested in supporting the cause.
The goal of this year’s annual campaign is to raise funds to help people get diagnostic testing. Every $50.00 raised will sponsor testing for one patient. Any amount you can contribute will help support access to life-saving treatment.
Thank you, in advance, for helping patients worldwide to achieve early diagnosis, no matter where they live. Happy holidays to all!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on December 18, 2012 | Comments: 0
The First Virtual CML Colloquium in Latin America was held in October with Dr. Cortes, attracting a total of 32 groups, 1,536 participants, with 173 in person at the meeting in Argentina.
Saturday, October 27th, was the day CML patients in 32 cities, in 14 countries in Latin America, all did the same thing. They all gathered together in a chosen location at their cities, around a screen and speakers, and they all listened through a Livestream channel to the presentation Dr. Jorge Cortés, hematologist from the MD Anderson Cancer Center, gave in Buenos Aires, before 173 patients and caregivers who came to the conference room at the Argentine Society of Hematology to see him in person.
Read this blog to learn more about what he discussed, to link to the archived video of the program, and to link to the photo compilation showing all of the groups around Latin America who came together by listening to this important talk at the same time!
Posted by Mercedes Arteaga on December 13, 2012 | Comments: 0
This is the final post in a series of four blog posts that tell the stories of the amazing paintings that won this year’s the Maximize Life Art Project.
The final winner is Tatiana from Moldova, and her drawing is entitled “Planting Hope.” Though her drawing, Tatiana reveals how her sense of hope was restored through high-quality medical treatment. She says, “My artwork is a symbol of hope that my country’s Medical Care has given me. This stage was soon replaced by light and serenity, as the doctors told me that I will make it, providing the right medicine for me. Now I feel fulfilled, as my disease has been disappearing as days went by.”
Congratulations to Tatiana on her many accomplishments, including winning this year’s Maximize Life Art Project! Visit Tatiana’s painting, “Planting Hope” in the Colors of Hope Gallery.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on December 04, 2012 | Comments: 0
This is the third in a series of four blog posts that tell the stories of the amazing paintings that won this year’s the Maximize Life Art Project. Behind each of these captivating images is a person living with cancer who, through their art, has courageously shared their message of struggle, hope, and survivorship.
The next winning entry is titled, “Awareness”. It comes from Rouamba in the country of Burkina Faso. Rouamba is the caregiver for her niece, who was diagnosed with cancer two years ago. Rouamba’s drawing symbolizes the strength and opportunity that she sees within each cancer survivor. “This drawing represents a cancer survivor who instead of being isolated, spends his time going to people to inform and sensitize them on behavior to adopt towards cancer survivors: be nice, emotional, sociable with them. Do not even let them despair. He goes to schools, churches, markets and even in hospitals. Thus, he lives a full life.”
Visit Rouamba’s painting in the Colors of Hope Gallery.
Posted by Danielle Matia on December 03, 2012 | Comments: 0
This is the second in a series of four blog posts that tell the stories of the amazing paintings that was selected as a Regional Winner in our annual Maximize Life Art Project.
Today’s painting is entitled “A Country Through Water”, by Carlos Armando Granados. Carlos’ painting was partially inspired by his native country of Columbia. Carlos says, “I wanted to do a monochromatic drawing using blue, it’s always blue sky, and surrounded by blue (water)…One day I asked my father what is color blue, he said ‘Blue is the sky, blue is Colombia.’” Read more to learn about his perseverance in the face of a cancer diagnosis, and his powerful message to fellow survivors.
Congratulations Carlos, on winning this year’s Maximize Life Art Project contest, on winning your courageous battle against cancer, and on your winning message of survival to fellow cancer survivors. Visit Carlos’s painting and other amazing entries in the Colors of Hope Gallery.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on November 28, 2012 | Comments: 0
Can you believe the quality of art this year for the Maximize Life Art Project? Of the many amazing entries, four winners were selected. Behind each of these captivating images is a person living with cancer who, through their art, has courageously shared their message of struggle, hope, and survivorship. To celebrate each of the four winning entries, a series of four blog posts will tell the story of the artist, their painting, and a powerful message of how they maximize life.
This post features Archana in India, and her painting entitled “Celebrate Life in Paradise”. Behind this piece is a message of optimism. Archana writes, “Always celebrate life in a paradise. Fill your thoughts with bright colors to keep your soul cheerful.” Her vibrant, dreamlike image reminds us that no matter what we are up against, we must take risks, follow our dreams, and celebrate life-- in childhood and all ages!
Visit Archana’s painting and the other powerful entries in the Colors of Hope Gallery.
Posted by Viji Venkatesh on November 26, 2012 | Comments: 1
Once a year in the United States, we have a holiday that reminds us of the importance of expressing gratitude. In the midst of our lives which we often turn into schedules that are too busy, with self-imposed chores which are too many, Thanksgiving allows us to stop, look around us, and appreciate what we have.
As proud members of the Maximize Life movement, today we say: “Thanks, from the bottom of our hearts, to our supporters without whom we would not be able to provide services; our colleagues who make the impossible seem not only possible but also easy; our partners who allow us to reach higher; our physicians whose dedication is unparalleled; our patient group leaders who teach us the true meaning of generosity; and to the families we serve, our patients and caregivers, who are dignity and courage personified.”
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on November 21, 2012 | Comments: 2
On October 20th, two patient groups-- in two different parts of the world-- were moving to the beat of the same music. They danced ZUMBA to Stomp Out Cancer!
Read more to learn to hear about the events in both Nicaragua and the Philippines, where patient groups held invigorating events to get their members up, exercising, and having fun as they tried the newest fitness craze—ZUMBA! After the Zumba workout, Nicaragua group members listened to a motivational speech. In the Philippines, group members participated in an interactive game modeled after “The Amazing Race” television show that paired patients and caregivers together to answer questions related to CML.
Both groups concluded their day with birthday cake in honor of Max’s birthday. We believe that he would be happy to have inspired such joyful activities! Way to go Alas de Vida and Touched by Max for planning such fun, interactive events, and for equipping your groups with new skills to enjoy living a healthy life!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on November 16, 2012 | Comments: 2
This October, patients in Nepal celebrated Stomp Out Cancer in collaboration with the Blood Cancer Society and Patan Hospital. Read more to see how 100 participants gathered for a day of education and action to raise awareness on cancer prevention, featuring a walk to raise awareness about cancer prevention in their community.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on November 14, 2012 | Comments: 1
In India, Friends of Max (FOM) Pune Chapter hosted a Stomp Out Cancer program in collaboration with a local school, The Samarth Vidyalay School. The Stomp Out Cancer event engaged the school children and their families in both education and activism. They brought in very special guests as educators and got everyone moving all day long!
The children and their families participated in a vibrant awareness march in their community, put on a skit about receiving a CML diagnosis, and released balloons to represent those unable to be present as well as their commitment to spreading the Stomp Out Cancer message.
'Read more' to find out about this meaningful collaboration with children, families, and teachers at The Samarth Vidyalay School. In empowering the local youth and community, the Stomp Out Cancer message is sure to be spread far and wide!
Posted by Viji Venkatesh on November 07, 2012 | Comments: 0
November is a favorite time of year because it is when we launch our yearly art exhibit in the Colors of Hope Art Gallery! The quality of year's art collection is phenomenal, and reading the personal messages from the artists makes going to the gallery an even more profound experience.
For 2012, we received 141 art entries from 18 countries. It was incredibly difficult to select this year’s Regional Winners and Country Honorable Mentions, but at last we are ready to announce the winners! To find out the Regional Winners and Country Honorable Mentions for 2012 and to see all of the incredibly colorful entries, visit the gallery today.
Click here to go to the Colors of Hope Gallery
We look forward to hearing your impressions of the art, so leave a comment in the gallery or send us your blog comments.
Enjoy the gallery!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on November 05, 2012 | Comments: 1
I left Seattle very anxious and nervous with anticipation. Will everything go as planned? Will the patients come? Hosting an event can be nerve wracking; especially when all our planning was done from so far. Seeing this meeting come together as a result of relentless advocacy work done by MAX, together with physicians and patient leaders on the African continent was incredible. Physicians treating CML across the region were able to share their challenges and learn from experts in the field.
And on the second afternoon, in a smaller setting, Bahija, from Morocco, introduced the culminating part of the workshop, offering the vision to form an umbrella group for CML advocates from Africa. Intense discussion and negotiations ensued to define the goal of the group and its name; after two rounds of vivacious voting, CML Life Africa was finally born and the Dar es Salaam declaration was signed! This was a dream come true for three years of labor intensive efforts had finally paid off.
Click 'Read More' to hear how the events in Tanzania unfolded.
Posted by Danielle Matia on October 31, 2012 | Comments: 1
As a part of the Stomp Out Cancer campaign, our patient group in the Philippines, Touched By Max (TBM), recently held an exciting “Bike for Life” event.
As the photos illustrate, the bikers made a big impression with their bright blue Stomp Out Cancer shirts and hats, along with their Maximize Life wristbands—letting everyone know about the campaign to Stomp Out Cancer!
Read the full post to learn about the group member whose healthy lifestyle inspired the event, as well as the group’s contribution to their local community. Way to go Touched by Max!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on October 31, 2012 | Comments: 1
This coming Saturday October 27th, Dr Jorge Cortes will give a live patient education presentation in Buenos Aires, Argentina, organized by The MAX Foundation under the auspices of LALNET, the Latin American Leukemia Net. The talk will be broadcast online live and patients, some of them accompanied by their doctors, throughout Latin America will join to listen to the session. They will also have the ability to interact and ask questions through a chatbox mechanism.
To join the e-education event, enter the program at www.livestream.com/almaargentina. For full event information click here.
Posted by Mercedes Arteaga on October 23, 2012 | Comments: 0
Our earlier blog post detailed the MaxSmiles group’s recent meeting to commemorate 9/22, Stomp Out Cancer, and the “What is MY PCR?" campaign in Bangkok, Thailand.
Now, is your chance to 'Read More' for details about their generous “Give Back” community outreach project, inlcuding an especially memorable story about one member, Grandma Chok, and the effort that she went to so she could participate in this project without actually being present. The celebration featured an educational workshop from knowledgeable physicians and mindfulness practice led by a Buddhist Monk, as well as a way for MaxSmiles members to give back to their community.
Thank you to Grandma Chok and all the MaxSmiles members who participated in the “Give Back” project!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on October 22, 2012 | Comments: 0
This year marks the FIFTH anniversary of the patient group MAX SMILES in Thailand! Read more to hear about how MaxSmiles commemorated 9/22, is Stomping Out Cancer, and raising awareness with the “What is MY PCR?" campaign, all while celebrating their own MaxSmiles group history AND giving back to their community!
Since there are so many memorable details to share from the MaxSmiles experience, the report on this event will be posted in two separate blog posts. So read more now and then stay tuned for part two that details the generous “Give Back” outreach project to collect goods for a rural children’s hospital.
Congratulations MaxSmiles on a life-changing five years, and cheers to the many years to come!
Posted by Guest Blogger on October 15, 2012 | Comments: 1
The inaugural patient and health care professionals’ colloquium on chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania, on 12th-13th October 2012 is underway! Click on 'Read more' to see the gallery of photos of the summit in action.
Already, intercontinental discussions are taking place between patient advocates and physicians from within the Africa region. Pat, Executive Director of MAX and Dr. Ngoma, Executive Director of the Ocean Roads Hospital, met to explore ways to improve CML treatment monitoring in the country, and many more discussions of the same caliber are expected. Physicians and patient leaders alike are sharing their experiences and making action plans to improve outcomes for people living with CML across Africa. And now the scientific sessions have begun.
Check out the photo gallery to see the photos just in from the colloquium in Dar.
Posted by Danielle Matia on October 11, 2012 | Comments: 1
“It was a day full of energy for all of us” shared Cynthia, our MaxStation in Mexico City. The day, September 22nd, emphasized nurturing one’s health—both emotionally and physically. In commemoration of International CML Day and the launch of the “Stomp Out Cancer” campaign, our friends in the Mexican patient group, Mexican Association of Leukemia and Gist (AMELEG), held an energizing and empowering event for patients and caregivers.
What are your plans to Stomp Out Cancer? Are you going to incorporate healthy snacks, relaxation techniques, and educational information that is accessible to all? We can’t wait to see what more patient groups have planned. Roll out your yoga mat to Stomp Out Cancer!
‘Read more’ to hear about all of the excitement, including a yoga class and disease education, all in one day!
Posted by Guest Blogger on October 08, 2012 | Comments: 0
What is an advocate if not an individual who can passionately convey the importance of a pressing need? Being at the right place at the right time and speaking to an audience with potential to make a difference is tremendously important for advocates. Six months after one passionate patient advocate stood up at a conference to share how he was scolded by his doctor for asking to know his PCR results, an international community-driven campaign was launched to increase awareness, education and understanding of the need to properly monitor CML treatment.
We are just getting started: in the words of Dr. Radich, ‘give PCR a chance!’ Join the campaign to get regular campaign updates http://www.whatismypcr.org/JoinCampaign.aspx
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on October 03, 2012 | Comments: 3
Today, October 1st marks the official beginning of the 2012 Global Cancer Awareness Campaign with the theme of Stomp Out Cancer! Groups around the world have already activated the fun! In Mexico, the local patient group had a workshop that included a yoga class as part of their disease education program and, on the other side of the globe; friends gathered in Yalta, Ukraine took to the streets with their Stomp T-Shirts for a run through town followed by a lecture on nutrition for people living with cancer. And this is only the beginning of the action. In total, 25 patient assoications will be participating in this year’s campaign through events that promote exercise and healthy lifestyle education!
Check out the Stomp Out Cancer event map that has now been posted on our website to learn what groups are doing to raise awareness about the importance of healthy living. Fellow Stompers, please add your updates, photos and comments to the MAX Facebook Page for everyone to see!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on October 01, 2012 | Comments: 1
Many of you will remember that a year ago, the UN High Level Summit for Non Communicable Diseases (NCDs), of which cancer is one, took place on September 19th and 20th. At that time, a team from The MAX Foundation represented your voices at the summit by carrying your signatures to the World Cancer Declaration and handing them over, alongside UICC, to the head of the World Health Organization, Madam Margaret Chan. A year has now passed and there are many groups still actively working towards global cancer control. However, the fight around global cancer control still needs your support!
Click on Read More for updates on the '25 by 25' goals and to learns ways that you and your group can get involved.
Posted by Guest Blogger on September 25, 2012 | Comments: 0
Our guest blogger today, Sujeesh S., is a Friends of Max India Trustee, a great advocate, a tireless volunteer, and the incredible designer behind the amazingly colorful banners and print materials that Friends of Max produces for meetings and events. He has a message for all of us as we prepare to welcome World CML Day tomorrow, September 22nd: "I just want to celebrate"
As he explains, "In the second year of launch, Friends of Max (FOM) has planned an elaborate all-day event in association with the prestigious Tata Memorial Hospital at its ACTREC centre in Kharghar on the outskirts of Mumbai. This event will bring eminent physicians from the hospital face to face with CMLers and their care givers. The emphasis this year will be to create awareness about the importance of monitoring one’s CML by testing for PCR levels. This will be done by launching The MAX Foundation’s 'What is My PCR' campaign on this day."
Read his full blog entry and don't forget to flip through the photo gallery to see some of his creative designs for the upcoming meet for 9/22!
Posted by Guest Blogger on September 21, 2012 | Comments: 1
LALNET y la Fundación MAX invitan a todos los pacientes con LMC en América Latina a asistir al Primer Coloquio Virtual sobre “Tratamiento de la Leucemia Mieloide Crónica”, con presentación en español a cargo del doctor Jorge Cortés, prestigioso hematólogo del MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston TX.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on August 20, 2012 | Comments: 5
A reminder for physicians of the Call for Abstracts presented by the International CML Foundation (iCMLf), due August 31st.
The iCMLf is inviting physicians from emerging economic regions to submit abstracts outlining the successful implementation of projects that have improved their management of CML. Selected abstracts will be awarded an iCMLf grant of up to US$5,000. The deadline for abstract submission is the 31st August 2012.
Further instructions how to submit the abstract and which information needs to be supplied can be found here:
Please click on ‘Read More’ for the iCMLf’s full announcement.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on August 09, 2012 | Comments: 0
Patient advocate leaders, check out the "What is MY PCR?" website launching today and find out how your group can join as a Partner in the "What is MY PCR?" campaign.
"What is MY PCR?" is a patient driven initiative led by a coalition of CML-focused organizations who are Partners in the campaign, raising awareness about the importance of CML treatment monitoring. Every CML group around the world is invited to become a Partner and join the coalition.
Please contact us to add your group to the list of Partners and order FREE "What is MY PCR?" buttons to hand out to patients and physicians in your home country. As well, any group is welcome to use the campaign materials as a way to encourage discussion around the benefits of PCR.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on August 01, 2012 | Comments: 1
On behalf of Viji and myself, I would like to say thank you to all the dear friends and colleagues that made our wish come true. Donating our birthdays this year made the day that much more extra special. Watching the support come in deepened our commitment to the community.
With a goal of $1,000 USD to support the work of The MAX Foundation, we are happy to report having raised a total of US$1,780.00!!! One hundred percent of the fund will be applied to continuing our efforts to support people living with blood cancer and rare cancer around the world.
Yes, we are one year older, however we are energized by the love received today and always. May we all continue to be surrounded by friends and family on our special day, and may we have many birthdays to celebrate together.
Viji and Pat
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on July 31, 2012 | Comments: 6
To mark their upcoming Leo birthdays, Pat, Executive Director of The MAX Foundation (MAX) and Viji, Country Head for India have decided on a special birthday wish: that we will support their cause by donating to MAX! They are dedicating their birthday wishes to MAX; asking friends, supporters, and loved ones to give to the organization on their behalf.
Friends (US and international) who wish to honor Pat and Viji with a gift please click here to give to MAX!
The goal is to raise $1,000.00 by Monday (since their birthdays are Saturday and Sunday)! We can do it for them!!! Let's make it a big birthday weekend for the Leo ladies by making their wishes come true!
Happy birthday Pat & Viji on behalf of all your friends around the world!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on July 25, 2012 | Comments: 8
The ‘What is MY PCR?’ campaign is a community driven - global awareness campaign aimed to increasing awareness of the need to regularly monitor treatment for CML, leading to the optimization of clinical outcomes. The campaign will feature ‘What is MY PCR?’ buttons as well as patient journals and other materials which will be made available among members of CML patient organizations and CML patients in the US and around the world. The ‘What is MY PCR?’ campaign will be launched around CML Awareness Day, September 22, 2012, through a partnership among CML patient organizations and key opinion leaders on CML.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on July 19, 2012 | Comments: 5
The MAX Foundation and Life Raft Group co-organized a GIST Physician Forum during the time of ASCO 2012 that was presented by the Global GIST Network. The meeting drew physicians from many countries as they discussed best practices for Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor (GIST) and convened a panel to discuss GIST case studies. Panelists included Dr. Dennis Tudtud, Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center (Cebu City, Philippines); Dr. Matías Chacón, Instituto Alexander Fleming (Buenos Aires, Argentina); Dr. Yoon-Koo Kang, Asan Medical Center (Seoul, South Korea); and Dr. Jonathan Trent, Sylvester Cancer Center (Miami, USA).
Click on ‘Read More’ for the joint press release that encapsulates some of the key take-aways from the event.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on July 03, 2012 | Comments: 0
It's not too late for physicians to sign up for Cepheid's July 5th webinar entitled, "Analytical and economic evaluation of the fully automated Xpert BCR-ABL Monitor Assay" about the GeneXpert which can be used for monitoring CML patients.
Follow this link to register for their online program!
Click 'Read More' or follow the links for additional information.
Posted by Danielle Matia on July 02, 2012 | Comments: 0
Touched by Max, a patient group in the Philippines has just been registered as a Social Welfare & Development Agency in the country! This is a certification in the Philippines that will accord a number of extra benefits to Touched by Max and allow them to help patients in even more ways. Though certifications and accreditations are different in every country, other patient groups may want to explore similar options in order to provide the best possible support to patients and families. Today we have a guest blog from Mila, who shares Touched by Max’s successes!
Posted by Guest Blogger on June 11, 2012 | Comments: 2
Recently American Society of Hematology (ASH) held their annual “Highlights of ASH in Latin America” conference in Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil. Two of our patient advocates, Inés and Mercedes, attended the conference and have a video to share about what they did at the conference!
Click to see the video and read more.
Posted by Mercedes Arteaga on May 30, 2012 | Comments: 0
CML New Horizons 2012 was held in Munich earlier this month and The MAX Foundation was proudly represented! The CML Advocates Network, which organized the event, has posted video web streams from the conference for everyone’s viewing.
Click "READ MORE" for a link to the videos!
Posted by Michael Root on May 21, 2012 | Comments: 0
On May 5th, Friends of Max held their Mumbai Regional Meeting at the Tata Memorial Hospital. Check out the video below for an introduction from patient group leaders at Friends of Max.
Watch the video here
Over 200 people attended the meeting, which featured many opportunities for education and support. The highlight of the meeting was a question-and-answer session with physicians, who spent 3 hours making sure that every question was answered and every concern addressed. What a wonderful way to build relationships between patients and physicians!
As always, the photos tell so much of the story, so please click Read More and go through the Photo Gallery.
We look forward to more video blogs to come!
Posted by Michael Root on May 15, 2012 | Comments: 2
The MAXimize Life Art Project was born out of a vision and a goal to give people living with cancer and their caregivers a way to express how they feel, through a means that every person in the world would relate to and understand. We invite you to share your story of living with cancer through art with our worldwide network of cancer survivors, caregivers and advocates by participating in MAXimize Life Art Project 2012.
Posted by Nataliya Semez on May 14, 2012 | Comments: 0
Today’s blog comes from our MaxStation in the Philippines, Nelia, who works closely with Touched by Max, the local patient support group dedicated to helping people living with CML and GIST. Touched by Max recently helped put together another successful blood drive, an activity they take on at least once a year. This year, they formed some new partnerships and had an opportunity to spread the word about cancer advocacy in the process, and we are only too happy to share the news of their success with you!
As always, if this idea inspires you, please send your blog comment to us so we can provide guidance on how to start a blood drive in your part of the world.
Posted by Guest Blogger on May 08, 2012 | Comments: 1
One great way to stay healthy and prevent cancer is to exercise! Research shows that exercise can prevent several types of cancer and help fight others. According to the Stanford Cancer Center, regular physical activity can:
- Reduce anxiety or depression
- Reduce fatigue
- Reduce pain
- Increase overall physical functioning
- Improve self-esteem
A walk or march is a fantastic way to promote exercise and healthy habits while raising awareness. Today we have a story from Nelia, a patient advocate in the Philippines. One of our affiliated patient groups, Touched by Max, recently organized a walk for life in Manila and Nelia was kind enough to share this story with us.
Posted by Guest Blogger on April 18, 2012 | Comments: 3
The “Rising Sun CML Patient Advocacy Meeting” just took place in Kuala Lumpur where The Max Foundation has an office and a rock-star team. Reporting on the highlights from the congress is our own, Mei Ching, Country Head for Malaysia, who was both a participant and an organizer. In her blog about the congress, she shares the ways in which the group of Asia Pacific advocates came together to improve access to treatment, support and patient group capacity building.
‘Read More’ for her overview on the discussions and consider if you or your organization might wish to participate next year in this meeting or like gatherings within your region!
Posted by Mei Ching Ong on April 13, 2012 | Comments: 3
The Max Foundation, an original member of Alianza GIST, joined the third annual meeting of the coalition at the end of March and came together with advocates from across Latin America to bolster support and advocacy for GIST patients within the region. The meeting included representatives from 12 countries and touched on how to improve education, training and support for the GIST community.
Click ‘Read More’ to learn more about the strategic planning that was accomplished, for information on regional resources, and to see the photo gallery. Thanks to the Life Raft Group for putting together the press release!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on April 11, 2012 | Comments: 1
In the fight against cancer, it can often be overwhelming, both to patients and advocates, when we look at all that needs to be done. When this happens it helps to remember how important each small act is, and that each of those acts truly makes a difference. The need for support is especially crucial when a patient is out of their element, such as when they are living in another country.
As an international patient advocacy organization, our MaxStations (also known as patient advocates) around the world form the backbone of our efforts to expand access to cancer treatment for all. It is through their outstanding efforts and collaboration with local patient groups, in big ways and small, that together we make an impact within communities.
We would like to share a wonderful story from one of our patient advocates in Thailand that reminds us all of the importance of reaching out to those in need.
Posted by Guest Blogger on April 03, 2012 | Comments: 2
April 2-8, is National Young Adult Cancer Awareness Week. This week, we invite you to celebrate the courage of young adults with cancer and to spread the word about a very important issue for our young people, and for all of us!
Each year in the US, approximately 72,000 young adults are diagnosed with cancer. It is frightening for anyone to receive a cancer diagnosis, but a diagnosis as a young adult comes with its own unique challenges. The website http://www.youngadultswithcancer.org is a great resource to share with any young adults you may know who have been affected by cancer.
This week, be sure to show extra support to the brave young adults in your life facing cancer!
Posted by Michael Root on April 02, 2012 | Comments: 2
The iCMLf’s March 2012 Newsletter has just been released. It can be downloaded here: http://www.cml-foundation.org/documents-and-files/doc_download/83-icmlf-newsletter-may-2012-no-5. To get the newsletters directly, sign up here: http://www.cml-foundation.org/newsletters.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on March 22, 2012 | Comments: 0
World Cancer Day in Guatemala included not only a meeting for patients, it also marked the formation of a new cancer coalition. The newly formed Union Guatemalteca Contra el Cancer (UGCC) is a coalition of 10 organizations which works against cancer in Guatemala. UGCC is working to strengthen the coalition and inviting other organizations to join, while learning to find the proper way to influence law makers to help with this cause. Does your local patient group already collaborate with other cancer support organizations? Are you interested in forming a national coalition?
Click 'READ MORE' to learn about the unified cancer control efforts in Guatemala.
Posted by Guest Blogger on February 22, 2012 | Comments: 0
February 15th marks International Childhood Cancer Day and families, as well as patient groups are encouraged to take action on behalf of kids everywhere by visiting the International Confederation of Cancer Parent Organizations (ICCCPO) website and starting a local or global campaign.
As the brother of a leukemia survivor diagnosed 20 years ago, it amazes me how far cancer treatment has come in just a few years. When diagnosed early enough, and treated with the appropriate protocols, approximately 70% of childhood cancers are curable. However, today only 20% of the world's children benefit from advanced medical care.
Children living in low and middle income countries account for 80% of the world's population of children. Some of these children have cancer and are currently denied the right to hope for a cure.
Let’s work together to help assure that “Kids can rise above cancer too”!
Posted by Michael Root on February 15, 2012 | Comments: 2
In the US, we are on the eve of Valentine's Day, a holiday about showing your love, appreciation and affection for the people in your life. As cancer survivors, caregivers and advocates, we show our love in many ways and often through our actions. This Valentine's Day you can also show your love to friends and family by sending MAX Valentine E-cards. With a wonderful selection of art submitted by people living with cancer and their caregivers, the MAX Valentine's Day E-cards are a great way to express your sentiments while honoring the courage of survivors everywhere.
Don't know what to buy for your loved one? Make a contribution to The Max Foundation on their behalf and we will let them know you made a gift in their honor.
Browse the selection of cards and get started
Happy Valentine's Day!
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on February 13, 2012 | Comments: 0
February 4th was the 2012 World Cancer Day and many of our affiliated patient groups around the world participated by hosting awareness events. This blog is a compilation highlighting events in Patna and Kochi, India and in Johannesburg, South Africa; as told from the perspective of our dear MaxStations. The themes and activities varied at each of the wonderful events, but the clear message was: TOGETHER WE CAN RISE ABOVE CANCER!
Click on Read More to go to our website and flip through the photo gallery of images from around the world.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on February 09, 2012 | Comments: 1
Friends, World Cancer Day is tomorrow, February 4! World Cancer Day is a chance for advocates around the world to demonstrate our commitment to the fight against cancer. In honor of this year’s theme, ‘Together it is possible,’ we have put together some ideas for how our affiliated patient groups and friends might be able to help the cause of improving cancer awareness, prevention, and treatment.
World Cancer Day offers a chance to renew our efforts to raise cancer awareness. The UN Summit on Non-Communicable Diseases last September set out ambitious goals to improve the prevention and treatment of cancer. The Max Foundation and our affiliated patient groups have so far contributed over 27,000 of UICC's 500,000 signatures to the World Cancer Declaration! You can be a part of this effort by signing the World Cancer Declaration if you haven’t already. Visit our site to sign the Declaration and add a personal message of support.
Click READ MORE to find out how you can be an advocate on World Cancer Day.
Posted by Michael Root on February 03, 2012 | Comments: 2
Families supporting a child diagnosed with CML may have specific pediatric issues to keep in mind that come up which are distinct from adult issues, but the CML advocates stands by your side. Parental concerns may vary from how best to help a child be adherent to his or her medication to how such medications affect children long term. The CML Advocates Network has a section of their website focusing on Junior CML Advocates which can be a resource and a forum for expressing your questions and concerns. The Max Foundation, the CML Advocates Network and the International CML Foundation all wish to support families facing pediatric CML, so please let us hear from you if we can help in any way.
Click READ MORE to learn more about resources for families facing pediatric CML.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on January 16, 2012 | Comments: 0
José Carreras is a world famous Spanish opera singer who gained fame as one of The Three Tenors, singing alongside Plácido Domingo and Luciano Pavarotti. While you may be familiar with his voice, you may not know his story. In this personal video conversation with the esteemed Professor Tariq Mughal, we hear from tenor José Carreras, telling his story about his diagnosis with leukemia, his odds of survival and how he managed to get the care and support he needed to beat his cancer and go on to become a true advocate in the field of cancer control.
The video called "Living with Leukemia: A conversation between José Carreras and Professor Tariq Mughal" has been shared courtesy of Professor Mughal, a leading oncologist in the field of leukemia thanks to his organization, the Alpine Oncology Foundation.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on January 09, 2012 | Comments: 1
Each year, the American Society for Hematology (ASH) meeting is full of exciting news for cancer survivors. In 2011, thousands of physicians came together in San Diego to exchange information about promising studies and statistics. And each year, we at The Max Foundation turn to our friends from the CML Advocates Network to help us digest and interpret all of the exciting findings. So, once again, we give thanks to Jan Geissler and Giora Sharf for their report on ASH outcomes related to CML, presented from the patient perspective. Click here for their full report.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on January 05, 2012 | Comments: 0
As we enter the giving season, please consider making a charitable contribution to The Max Foundation. The Annual Giving Campaign takes inspiration from a young cancer survivor in India named Vaibhav. While young in years, he is certainly a wise soul with a great deal to teach us about personal responsibility. Your contributions provide sustainable resources for Vaibhav and families like his in India. We thank you, in advance, for your support!
Posted by Nataliya Semez on December 20, 2011 | Comments: 0
Today we hear from Heather, a cancer survivor in Durban, South Africa. She is a quilter and her colorful art piece was selected in the 2011 Maximize Life Art Project as the Africa Regional Winner. In her own words, we hear from Heather about the deep symbolic meaning conveyed through her artwork, as well as how both her community and her quilting helped her to live with cancer.
Posted by Guest Blogger on November 30, 2011 | Comments: 6
Many of you will remember Teresa, our artist friend from Argentina whose painting was chosen last year as a winner. This year, her painting entitled, “Paz interior” which means “Inner Peace” has also been selected as the Americas Regional Winner. Mercedes, our team member in Buenos Aires tells us about what inspires Teresa and shares about the meaning behind her nature themed art.
Posted by Mercedes Arteaga on November 28, 2011 | Comments: 1
We are always excited to receive reports of the Celebrations of Life throughout the world, and this report from Pakistan offers an even closer view into the lives and hopes of young people there. This year, our MaxStation Salim invited 30 A level senior students to help him make a difference in the lives of some very young children facing very big challenges at the Children Cancer Hospital in Karachi. The hospital is a project of the Children Cancer Foundation whose motto is, “Charity with Dignity! - … to provide timely diagnosis and quality treatment to all the children suffering from childhood cancer irrespective of their paying ability.”
Posted by Guest Blogger on November 17, 2011 | Comments: 2
Today we are excited to feature the story about Ploy’s art, our Regional Winner for Asia, representing Thailand. Ploy is the sister of a leukemia survivor and we have known her and her brother for several years. In fact, many of you may remember meeting her family in our “Colors of Hope” book. In this blog, Ploy’s story is told to us by Wasan Wasinprasert, one of our devoted MaxStations in Bangkok. He shares that Ploy’s artwork reflects her experience as it shows that when our bodies and minds are strong and healthy, there is nothing we need to be afraid of.
Posted by Guest Blogger on November 11, 2011 | Comments: 1
Here we highlight a Celebration of Life event held in El Salvador, in Central America. Around the world, the growth of patient groups tells an intriguingly similar and equally inspiring story. People who first come together to find support from others for their own hardships, soon turn their vision outward to the greater community to bring comfort and support to others. Amor a la Vida, Love to Life, is one such group. This year they first created a nurturing space for children within a hospital unit geared to adults, then furnished a children’s library and play space to keep expanding the minds of young patients, Along the way, they teach us all how to expand our vision.
Posted by Guest Blogger on November 09, 2011 | Comments: 2
Last week, Pat and I had the opportunity to be part of a symposium organized by the Global Task Force on Expanded Access to Cancer Care and Control in Developing Countries. The group’s name has a lot of words and a lot of brain power! Orchestrated as part of the Harvard Global Equity Initiative, this group aims to bring together great minds in the world of cancer medicine, economics and advocacy in order to achieve global cancer control from your region to mine. Be sure to check out the video clips of Pat and Lance Armstrong from the symposium and also follow the link to the group's report on "Closing the Cancer Divide".
Posted by Erin Schwartz on November 02, 2011 | Comments: 1
For many years now, we have invited friends, survivors and artists from around the world to join our Maximize Life Art Project. We have been amazed by the entries from year to year. This year, the collection of art from India was especially strong. The Friends of Max patient association in India who submits artworks, also has the wonderful tradition of making calendars each year which feature 12 art pieces. What follows is a blog entry from one of our MaxStations, Melissa, in Mumbai who shares the behind-the-scenes insights about coordinating the art project alongside Friends of Max.
Be sure to click on the website link to go the photo gallery, which has photos showing ideas about how your group can maximize artwork in your home country.
Posted by Guest Blogger on November 01, 2011 | Comments: 1
Chillar means ‘small change’ in Hindi and so ‘Chillar Party’ has become common parlance in Hinglish for ‘spunky kids’, explains Viji Venkatesh, our lead MaxStation in India. And in her tell all blog, Viji shares how a group of children bravely fighting cancer, their families and almost everyone in the vicinity of the pediatric ward of their local hospital joined their Chillar Party in order to celebrate life in the most festive way, with a viewing of the Bollywood movie produced by Salman Khan. Brought together by the local patient association Friends of Max, the team at The Max Foundation and thanks to Salman's own foundation "Being Human"—the room full of spunky kids had the greatest time watching and enjoying and maximizing life together.
Read Viji’s full blog and check out the photo gallery to see the excitement for yourself!
Posted by Viji Venkatesh on October 25, 2011 | Comments: 2
Our Guest Blogger today is Wirat, one of our MaxStations in Thailand who works closely with the local patient group in Vietnam called Max’s Vie. In this blog, Wirat shares a wonderful example of how a small group, such as Max's Vie came together, recruited more volunteers from the community and made children's dreams come true for a whole afternoon. This event unleashed love and creativity among volunteers and beneficieries in a children's hospital in Vietnam.
Read the story and view all the photos ofchildren smiling brightly and get ideas about how your group can go far in improving the lives of children and their families facing cancer.
Posted by Guest Blogger on October 24, 2011 | Comments: 0
Dear volunteers, supporters and most of all dear friends and members of the worldwide Max family: on this very special day, Max’s day, I can’t help but to feel blessed to be walking this road together with all of you. I am grateful for the opportunity to be united with you in the Maximize Life Movement. I am honored by the dignity with which, together, we carry on Max’s legacy. I can feel your energy and it gives me renewed strength.
Today we celebrate the gift he has given us, the gift of our friendship. Thank you, Max, and Happy Birthday.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on October 19, 2011 | Comments: 2
October 19th marks the anniversary of Max’s birthday. For those of us who keep Max alive in our hearts throughout our daily lives, this year’s remembrance takes his legacy even closer to what we might imagine his mission to be: helping children to survive cancer.
We lost Max at a time when the therapy he needed was not yet realized. And yet today, we live in a time where lack of access to novel treatments and diagnostics remains a barrier for helping children to live beyond cancer. With that in mind, it is in Max’s honor that we envisioned “Children can rise above cancer too”.
Happy birthday, Max; you inspire us to do great things. We carry your spirit with us with every step we take.
In honor of Max’s birthday anniversary, we commit to bringing the “Give Soap – Save a Child” Project to fruition. Please join us by making your pledge today on behalf of children facing cancer.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on October 18, 2011 | Comments: 10
We are so excited by your generous contributions to the “Give Soap- Save a Child” Project that we have created a Wall of Hope in our office—and your names are on display! Each brightly colored Brave Sparrow baby bird represents a child whose life will be spared thanks to your contributions. YOU are enabling young pediatric cancer patients in developing countries to LIVE with cancer. BUT we still have far to go until we reach out $10,000.00 goal. Every $10.00 given goes directly to buying soap to fight infection for a child during his or her cancer treatment. So please add your name to our Wall of Hope by sending a contribution to give kids in developing countries the same chance at survival as the young cancer survivors in the western hemisphere.
Thanks to you, the 2011 campaign motto, “Kids can rise above cancer too” is becoming a reality!
Posted by Nataliya Semez on October 12, 2011 | Comments: 0
This was a week of first times in Addis; first time that a representative of the Federal Ministry of Health participated of a community meeting of this kind, first time representatives of the media were present, first time parents of children with cancer were able to voice their concerns and demand better services. It was also a week in which for the first time, molecular monitoring of cancer treatment was done anywhere in Sub-Saharan Africa. Earlier in the week, a pilot test had been conducted to determine the molecular response of four patients to treatment of CML. The importance of this leap in the ability of doctors to successfully treat patients was felt like a shockwave throughout the health care community of the country. The excitement of the veil of darkness being lifted and the anticipation of a full program coming soon made the Celebration of Life on Saturday, October 8, that much special.
'Read More' to hear about the full program during the Celebration of Life in Addis, Ethiopia.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on October 11, 2011 | Comments: 3
The Celebration of Life known as the “October Event” just took place in Thailand, leaving the MaxSmiles patient group members full of happiness and contentment. With a theme like “Simply, easy and make it feel like home”—of course it was a warm and wonderful celebration! Our report on their event comes from Guest Blogger, Wirat, one of our MaxStations in Thailand who works closely with MaxSmiles. In this blog entry, Wirat shares all of the thoughtful touches that went into making the Celebration of Life in Bangkok a heartwarming success.
Be sure to click on the photo gallery to see all the great pictures from the day!
Posted by Guest Blogger on October 10, 2011 | Comments: 2
Every year October highlights a bond The Max Foundation and LIVESTRONG have, in addition to parallel missions to fight cancer worldwide. Friends will know that October is also an important month for The Max Foundation since it is the time of the annual Celebrations of Life around the world. However, readers may not be aware that October 2nd signifies LIVESTRONG Day for the Austin based Lance Armstrong Foundation. This year, Friends of Max, the local patient association in India held one of the biggest celebrations, which took place in Hyderabad, India on LIVESTRONG Day and so participants took the opportunity to enjoin both occasions and celebrate life, while living strong!
Click on "Read More" to find out how LIVESTRONG Day and the Celebration of Life unfolded in Hyderabad.
Posted by Viji Venkatesh on October 02, 2011 | Comments: 1
LIVESTRONG Day is on Sunday, October 2nd and friends around the world are encouraged to WEAR YELLOW to show that you are joined in the fight against cancer. The Max Foundation proudly stands with LIVESTRONG and is united in honoring October as a month to celebrate life. This Sunday, we also celebrate life with a “HAPPY BIRTHDAY SHOUT OUT” to our friend Aidan who is already a survivor.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on September 30, 2011 | Comments: 4
On September 8, thirty excited cancer patients gathered at the hematology lab at Philippine General Hospital in Manila to get their blood drawn. They were part of a unique program that would give them the opportunity to test the efficacy of their ongoing cancer treatment. Expected needle jitters were replaced by a party atmosphere. In typical Filipino style, at the head of the party was Rod, a man whose love for his son continues to be the catalyst of help for an entire community.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on September 29, 2011 | Comments: 1
International CML Awareness Day was celebrated yesterday all around the world and Mumbai, India was no exception. Our team lead in India, Viji shares a lovely overview of how CML survivors and supporters, along with our team in the MaxIndia Office came together to commemorate 9/22. After reading her story from the day, be sure to click through the gallery of photos to see the images of the participants enjoying, the cake showing the chromosomal translocation of 9-22 and more!
Posted by Viji Venkatesh on September 23, 2011 | Comments: 4
On September 19th and 20th, world leaders, Ministries of Health and policy makers came together at the United Nations (UN) to adopt a Political Declaration on Non Communicable Diseases (NCDs) including cancer, establishing them as a global health priority—and The Max Foundation was there to represent cancer survivors and supporters everywhere. The 500,000+ signatures in support of the World Cancer Declaration presented at the Summit included yours! Being at the UN General Assembly, among friends from other determined NGOs, was an amazing privilege and meant everything because we carried you with us every step of the way.
Thanks to each of you for enthusiastically supporting the World Cancer Declaration and for motivating our collective efforts to stop the epidemic of cancer and other NCDs!
Be sure to Read More and click through the Photo Gallery to see all of our photographs from the Summit.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on September 21, 2011 | Comments: 5
Today we are sending our very best wishes to all our friends around the world honoring International CML Awareness Day!!! This is a momentus occasion and it is inspiring to know that people worldwide are enjoined through this global initiative. Click here to find out how groups around the world are marking this important day.
Are you looking for a way to be part of International CML Awareness Day on September 22nd? The Max Foundation has posted two new video interviews about chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). All you have to do to raise awareness is to watch our videos and share them through your favorite social media outlet. Consider sending the video links to friends by email, posting them on your Facebook page or even sharing them on Twitter.
Together, we have the power to increase awareness around the world!
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on September 21, 2011 | Comments: 2
After many events, local campaigns, signature sheets, and with the individual efforts of so many, we have finally come to the dawn of the day we have been waiting for, the UN High Level Summit on non communicable diseases (NCDs). My colleague Erin and I will be on site in New York, excited to be part of the historical event. Fresh in our minds will be every single signature that came into our website. Fresh in our hearts will be the support of each one of you. We will do our best to honor you, and as long as we do our best, we will never fail.
Join the summit meeting by watching online!
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on September 17, 2011 | Comments: 3
Our newest MaxStation in the Philippines, Milagros is our Guest Blogger today, as she had the pleasure of attending the opening of the Maximize Life Art Gallery. The art exhibit in Manila is a wonderful example of a community based partnership created to help raise awareness about cancer locally. We congratulate the local patient group Touched by Max on all their efforts to make this colorful art show possible.
Be sure to click through our photo gallery to see all the pictures!
Posted by Guest Blogger on September 14, 2011 | Comments: 3
LiveStrong’s report called “Delivering Hope: Cancer Care in the Developing World” was just released to the world in time for the upcoming High Level Summit meeting on NCDs at the United Nations.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on September 09, 2011 | Comments: 2
Is your country’s leader going to be at the UN High Level Summit on Non Communicable Diseases (NCDs) September 19th and 20th? With only 18 days before the summit, the World Health Organization (WHO) has released this video to remind people everywhere about the importance of stopping NCDs like cancer in its tracks.
Please feel free to re-post this video clip on your local patient association’s website to spread this message around the world! Click on the full story for links to the video in various languages.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on August 31, 2011 | Comments: 1
The charisma of Vaibhav can be felt through the words of our team lead in India who describes her first meeting with the boy of nine years old. The young cancer survivor made his presence and his pride known as he added his name to the World Cancer Declaration, along with the other 20,000+ signatures collected by The Max Foundation. This young man’s voice will now be heard from the patient group meeting in Pune all the way to the UN Summit on non communicable diseases (NCDs) in New York. Read the full story to hear how Vaibhav gracefully grasped what it meant to sign the declaration for himself and for so many others of us facing cancer worldwide.
Posted by Viji Venkatesh on August 22, 2011 | Comments: 14
This summer, several team members from The Max Foundation attended St. Jude’s Cure4Kids Global summit in Memphis. Viji Venkatesh, Head MaxStation based in Mumbai, India was among the participants. In the blog that follows she elegantly shares her impressions of her visit while telling the story of St. Jude’s Hospital. Her tale weaves in the lives of Danny Thomas, along with Dr. Pinkel and how such visionaries still touch the lives of children with cancer around the world today. Finally, Viji treats us to poetry excerpts from young people who have faced cancer with courage and bravery, thanks to the team at St. Jude’s.
Posted by Viji Venkatesh on August 02, 2011 | Comments: 0
In a recent blog comment, Kenyan patient leader Francis Kariuki shared with us his personal message for world leaders on the topic of cancer control. His message was so powerful and inspiring that we asked if it could be shared with all of you in a blog of its own. We send our thanks to dear Francis; your words remind us why we need to take action immediately!
Click on ‘Read More’ for Francis’ poignant message on behalf of Kenya and beyond.
Posted by Guest Blogger on August 01, 2011 | Comments: 0
Does your local patient association meet as a group each month? MaxSmiles, the local patient group in Thailand has shown us a wonderful way their members have chosen to spend their time together: crocheting hats for children going through chemotherapy!
Folks who already know about our “With Love in Every Stitch” program collecting handmade hats for children facing cancer worldwide will appreciate how the activities in Bangkok are a great example of a global initiative made local.
Be sure to click on the photo gallery to see all the smiles crocheting hats for kids can inspire!
Posted by Nataliya Semez on July 28, 2011 | Comments: 3
We are so excited!!!!!!! Aren’t you excited? Let’s all get excited for the 2011 “Kids can rise above cancer too” campaign!
Have you seen the adorable new Maximize Life logos all over our website? Now, our favorite Brave Sparrow has a family! And this Brave Sparrow family represents all of us and all of our children. And it especially represents children facing cancer around the world.
Read our new Project Features to learn more about how you, your patient associations and your local cancer support organizations can come together by hosting Celebrations of Life events that directly benefit kids with cancer. By joining together, we can ensure that children CAN AND WILL survive cancer, no matter where they live!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on July 27, 2011 | Comments: 2
Friends around the world, together we have reached an amazing milestone for our collection of signatures in support of the World Cancer Declaration! More than 20,000 people have added their names through The Max Foundation's website in support of this important declaration that will be presented to world leaders at the United Nations High Level Meeting about cancer control and other non communicable diseases (NCDs) in September.
If you have not yet signed, it isn’t too late: click here to sign!
Read on to find out which countries have collected the most!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on July 18, 2011 | Comments: 2
At a Special Session during the 2010 Clinton Global Initiative meeting called “Addressing Cancer in the Developing World: Health Equity and an Overlooked Public Health Crisis” leaders in the arena of cancer control came together for an open discussion. As we approach the September High Level Summit meeting all about non communicable diseases (NCDs) including cancer, you may be interested in watching this video session that gives more background on why it is so important for the world to address the cancer epidemic today.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on July 13, 2011 | Comments: 0
Just today an Open Letter to Heads of State around the world signed by Lance Armstrong of LIVESTRONG was publicly released and we are all invited to add our names! Click here to read the letter and sign on.
Watch the video about why we must stop the worldwide cancer epidemic, add your name and then use the given template to encourage friends and family to join our cause.
Sign for yourself. Sign for your mother, father, sister, child. Sign for all of us.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on July 11, 2011 | Comments: 4
Facebook friends, join our new Facebook Group for our "With LOVE in Every Stitch" knit hat collection program benefitting children with cancer worldwide.
We are collecting hand made hats for children receiving cancer treatment in 5 participating hospitals and 4 countries!!! You can touch a child’s life in a very simple and beautiful way! Donate a hat or ask someone you know to help us reach our goal: 600 hats by the end of October!
When you join the Facebook Group, you will be able to learn how to participate in the program, receive updates on our collective progress, and even enjoy our Hat of the Month Feature.
Click here to join our Facebook Group today for With LOVE in Every Stitch!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on July 08, 2011 | Comments: 0
Friends everywhere, we are pleased to share in this blog the draft report issued today on the outcomes of the June 16th Civil Society Hearing on Non Communicable Diseases (NCDs) at the United Nations (UN)—and an exciting chance to watch the UN hearing for yourself! Watching the hearing promises to get each of us energized and inspired about all that we can accomplish together.
So read our full blog to learn how you can get involved in making a difference around cancer control in your own country and in the world.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on June 24, 2011 | Comments: 1
On Friday, June 10th 2011, starting at 8:00 am CDT, sessions of the Cure4kids Global Summit will be streamed live through a free webcast. Don’t miss our own Executive Director, Pat Garcia-Gonzalez, as she presents a report on the 2010 Maximize Life Global Cancer Awareness Campaign. Also presenting on Tobacco and Cancer Awareness – an education program for children in the school in rural settings, our MaxStation Coordinator Asia Pacific Region, Viji Venkatesh. Download the full program.
Posted by Nataliya Semez on June 06, 2011 | Comments: 0
Last weekend, more than 100 CML and GIST patient advocates gathered in Amsterdam, attending the 2011 New Horizons in Treating Cancer congress. Advocates came from Europe, North America, Asia, Australia, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America, representing your voice and mine. The exchange of ideas, knowledge and resources is a critical way for everyone to come together in order to strengthen the entire CML and GIST global communities. By meeting each other in person, networks are enhanced and people become energized to work together through the year towards support and problem solving across borders.
Read on to learn more about this exciting meeting of the minds among cancer advocates, which benefits survivors everywhere.
Posted by Mei Ching Ong on May 20, 2011 | Comments: 6
Is your local patient group maximizing its opportunities through the internet to promote itself and reach other patients going through similar experiences? Does your group have a blog? Are they on Facebook, yet? These days, the tools for creating new platforms like blogs, Facebook Pages and websites have gotten easier to work with, even for people with limited online experience. Now is the time for your group to take advantage of all the publicity and support opportunities thanks to modern technology.
Read this full blog that describes how ALMA, the patient support group in Argentina has become part of the World Wide Web, and learn by their example how many people can be helped thanks to technology!
Posted by Mercedes Arteaga on May 10, 2011 | Comments: 2
Is your local patient group thinking about organizing a patient congress? Where would you begin? Learn from Max Family in Malaysia how they have coordinated the second ‘Patient Congress for People Living with CML’ in conjunction with the Malaysia National Haematology Scientific Meeting. The 2011 congress is in Kuching, East Malaysia and over 65 participants, including cancer survivors and caregivers are expected to join! Read on to find out what is planned in Malaysia.
Posted by Mei Ching Ong on April 26, 2011 | Comments: 7
“You started it. We will not rest until your dream to find a cure is realized.” says Isadora Sharp, the Director of the Terry Fox Run. The quote summarizes nicely the run that began with a man running across Canada to raise money for cancer research and is now an international phenomenon. The Friends of Max patient group in Mumbai joins enthusiastically every year and today, we hear about the event through the eyes of Sudha, one of our MaxStations in India.
Click on Read More to see the full gallery of photos from the Terry Fox Run!
Posted by Guest Blogger on March 31, 2011 | Comments: 2
Have you visited The Max Foundation’s Facebook page? Now is the time to LIKE us on Facebook so you can follow all of our posts!
Why should you LIKE us on Facebook? It will enable you to become part of our network and receive updates posted on our Facebook Page. We actively post information on cancer control initiatives worldwide, news articles related to cancer, patient group activities and more. When you LIKE us on Facebook, we also get the chance to engage in an interactive platform, you have the opportunity to send us questions, comments and feedback through Facebook and we can respond on our page.
We look forward to meeting you on Facebook!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on March 23, 2011 | Comments: 1
The first ever “art workshop with a twist” was held on February 26th at ALMA (Asociación de Leucemia Mieloide Argentina) in Argentina. The three hour workshop was divided into two parts: First, a relaxation exercise which was based on the theory of Neuro-Linguistic Programming; and second, the actual art part of the workshop, consisting of mandala painting. What does all this mean? Read on for a complete explanation and become inspired to have the same kind of creative workshop in your local group!
Posted by Mercedes Arteaga on March 14, 2011 | Comments: 4
This March 9th will mark the day Max Rivarola lost his battle with CML 20 years ago. For those of us who were there, each minute of that day is forever stamped in our minds and hearts, and yet, 20 years seems like an eternity; a life cut short and the regret of what could have been. We find solace in the memories of his smile, the fun and happy times we shared, and his loving heart. We live in gratitude to each person who continues to carry on his name in all corners of the world as a symbol of hope, and we are humbled by your love.
May his soul rest in peace, may the memories never fade, and may we continue to find the strength to rise above cancer.
In remembrance of Max and all those who lost their battle with cancer, today we ask that you light a candle in their memory and renew your commitment to making cancer a global health priority.
Click READ MORE below to leave a comment with your thoughts on this day of remembrance.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on March 09, 2011 | Comments: 21
Smiles were seen far and wide on the faces of Touched By Max participants showing their gratitude for treatment access in an original way: with handmade hats! The “Hats Off” celebration in Manila was a way for everyone to creatively and personally express their appreciation for life. This story is presented by Nelia Medina, our Guest Blogger and MaxStation in the Philippines.
Click on Read More to get to the full story to see our Photo Gallery with all the colorful hats; yet another way people living with cancer are Maximizing Life!
Posted by Guest Blogger on March 03, 2011 | Comments: 3
In honor of the International Childhood Cancer Day, the Junior CML Advocates website is being launched! The Junior CML Advocates group is an extension of the CML Advocates Network and the site promises to be an excellent resource for families facing chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). The site will feature news and advocacy updates, information about pediatric CML, as well as newsletters. Organizations and groups around the world are coming together for childhood cancer on February 15th, visit the Junior CML website to read stories about families facing cancer, how they are maximizing their lives and how they are supporting each other.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on February 15, 2011 | Comments: 3
Standing on stage at the UICC gathering in Geneva, the Maximize Life delegation delivered their key message that cancer control is needed everywhere in the world. Today, we bring you a home video of the Maximize Life moment when the delegates proudly handed over the 13,000 signatures to UICC.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on February 09, 2011 | Comments: 3
In honor of World Cancer Day on February 4th, we are so excited to share this year’s Maximize Life video, dedicated to everyone who joined the 2010 Global Cancer Awareness Campaign by adding their names to the World Cancer Declaration and participating in local cancer awareness events. In partnership with 30 patient associations around the world, over 12,000 signatures were collected at 60 community events. Together, we are making our voices heard!
After watching the Maximize Life video, read on for Pat’s World Cancer Day address. And don't forget to wear your wristband!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on February 03, 2011 | Comments: 3
World Cancer Day is coming soon, a day when people all across the globe will join together to raise awareness about the need for cancer control. As a cancer survivor or a loved one, you are already honoring World Cancer Day by living your life to the fullest. And on February 4th, a delegation of international patient leaders will be representing all of us by handing over to UICC the 12,000 signatures to the World Cancer Declaration collected during the 2010 Global Cancer Awareness Campaign.
Let’s show our support for people affected by cancer everywhere by wearing our Maximize Life wristbands and getting involved in World Cancer Day, 2011.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on January 27, 2011 | Comments: 7
On December 23, 2010, the United Nations (UN) General Assembly unanimously adopted a UN Modalities Resolution creating a once-in-a-generation opportunity to put Non Communicable Diseases (NCDs) on the global agenda. But this is only the beginning of the work ahead of us to make sure that NCDs, including cancer become a global health priority.
Read on to learn more about how your community can take action to help make cancer a global health priority.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on January 20, 2011 | Comments: 3
A video series called the Virtual Education Program, created by the International CML Foundation (iCMLf) in partnership with The Max Foundation, is now available for your viewing. While the webcasts were developed for an audience of physicians treating CML in emerging regions, they may also be a resource for people with CML, no matter where you live. The Virtual Education Program features leading hematologists of the iCMLf, such as Dr. John Goldman and Dr. Tim Hughes, as well as an interview led by our own Pat Garcia-Gonzalez.
Visit the iCMLf website to view the complete video series.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on January 14, 2011 | Comments: 2
As we enter 2011 thinking about resolutions for the year to come, we recommit ourselves to working on small and large scales, locally and internationally, towards reducing the discrimination faced by people living with cancer. While the goal of de-stigmatizing cancer is not new, we come with renewed energy and ideas; already seeking new opportunities for partnership and hearing new stories of success. The story that follows is of two mothers in India, each of whom was facing their own struggles to overcome stigma, showing us that in our own intimate circles, as well as in our global community, together we can change the face of cancer.
Posted by Viji Venkatesh on January 04, 2011 | Comments: 8
As the year comes to an end, we are reminded of our blessings; the collective opportunity to make a difference; the wonderful people we met, once new faces who are now friends and part of our big family, as well as old friends with whom we shared our journey for another year.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on December 27, 2010 | Comments: 4
Some of you may already be familiar with the remarkable story of Alhassane, a cancer survivor from Niger who travels for miles by camel, among other modes of transportation, to access his treatment. Each year, he dazzles us with his bright and colorful digital art, ripe with meaning and this year his work entitled “Bonheur, joie, longevite de vie” was selected as the winner for the Africa Region.
Posted by Danielle Matia on December 22, 2010 | Comments: 5
Most of you already know Fan, a dear friend of The Max Foundation, a cancer survivor, a patient leader and an artist who lives and works in Malaysia and continues to inspire us daily. In fact, it is his endearing “Brave Sparrow” image which has been featured prominently on our tribute wall, stickers and website as the symbol for the Maximize Life Movement. Today, we bring you Fan’s latest winning creation, a multicolored graphic called “We make it, because we never give up!” Read the full blog story to hear the encouraging message he shares through this new art piece.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on December 20, 2010 | Comments: 2
Mina is a volunteer in Azerbaijan who depicts “Old Town” Baku in her art, showing a time when communities were close and supportive of each other. She looks towards a time when neighborhoods become close, once again, and sees patient groups such as the one in Baku as an important part of re-instilling a sense of community support.
Click on Read More to hear Mina's full description of the meaning behind her art.
Posted by Nataliya Semez on December 17, 2010 | Comments: 4
Teresa, the creator of “Atardecer en Paz” and Latin America regional winner for the art project, is a 71-year-old CML survivor from Argentina affiliated with the local patient group called ALMA. She describes her serene artwork depicting a rowboat by the seashore, “I am a boat, I find myself resting on the warm sand while I observe the wonder of the sea…In spite of the pummeling of nature, that could be compared to the sufferings a person may go through due to a disease…both the sun and the flowing of the sea, sources of energy that give us life, will magically be reborn.”
Click on Read More to see a photo of Teresa and hear her full description of the meaning behind her art.
Posted by Mercedes Arteaga on December 15, 2010 | Comments: 5
This is your personal invitation to the grand opening of our virtual art exhibit; just click here to see the Colors of Hope Gallery including selected winners from 2010. The artists who have shared their artistic expressions with us all represent courage and depict their own interpretations of what it means to “Maximize Life”. Each piece of art tells its own story, just as each person who lives with cancer has different experiences, thoughts and feelings about their journey.
Maximize your life, as you marvel at this year’s art collection: View Colors of Hope Gallery.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on December 14, 2010 | Comments: 2
With winter approaching in many parts of the world, it is timely that children in five countries and seven hospitals undergoing cancer treatment are now receiving handmade knit hats donated by the local Edmonds community as part of our “With Love in Every Stitch” Program. During this season of giving, we wish to send special thanks to everyone near and far who has given time, heart and reams of yarn to make this program a success. Click on Read More for excerpts from the blogs of team members who visited the children in Russia, Uzbekistan and Mexico to present the hats.
Posted by Nataliya Semez on December 13, 2010 | Comments: 1
We have been busily readying the amazing art received this year as part of the Art Project and very shortly the 2010 winners will be announced!Just to get you in the mood for art and in anticipation of the announcements, today we bring to you a recap of an art therapy workshop that took place in Argentina in July.
Posted by Mercedes Arteaga on December 03, 2010 | Comments: 0
Throughout Latin America, in Central America and beyond, the cancer support community has been actively celebrating life and we have photos to prove it! The patient associations in the region have had one or more awareness events in Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Ecuador and Colombia. Visit our website to see the complete gallery of photos showing event highlights.
Posted by Mercedes Arteaga on November 30, 2010 | Comments: 6
Thanksgiving is one of those holidays that go beyond a day off work and a lot of food. Thanksgiving in the United States brings with it a chance to stop the mad rush of our daily routine and tell our family and friends how much we appreciate having them in our lives.
As I look back at this year, I realize how incredibly lucky we are to be surrounded by a global community of the most amazing people one could have ever wished to meet. The work we do daily gives us the chance to meet many courageous families; the partnerships we form help us make a difference; and the awareness campaign wrapped it all up with a glorious month of advocacy and hope.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on November 24, 2010 | Comments: 7
In partnership with 31 patient organizations and hundreds of volunteers, and with great determination, today we reached our goal of collecting more than 10,000 tributes and signatures to the World Cancer Declaration.
It was only a few weeks ago, at the World Cancer Congress in Shenzhen, China, that we dared to pledge the highest level of signatures in support of the Declaration. As scary as this was, we knew we could do it. Our secret: we work with the most dedicated partners, the greatest patient leaders, the most courageous survivors and the most committed supporters, one could possibly work with.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on November 22, 2010 | Comments: 8
The African continent has been busy this month Maximizing Life! Cancer awareness events have recently taken place in Togo, Mauritius, Sudan, Kenya and Sierra Leone. Patient groups in each of the countries have taken the lead on organizing events within their own communities, from soccer matches to cancer education programs, all featuring their own Maximize Life Tribute Wall. These colorful photos tell the stories of recent events throughout the region.
Posted by Danielle Matia on November 18, 2010 | Comments: 4
Cold winds and wintery temperatures could not stop volunteers from patient group “Sodeystvie”, charitable organizations AdVITA and Nastenka, and other volunteers from hitting the streets full force for the Maximize Life campaign in Russia!
Posted by Nataliya Semez on November 17, 2010 | Comments: 2
Cyclists rode through Nairobi’s town center this month as part of the “Cycling4Cancer” event organized by the patient association in Kenya known as Henzo. In addition to raising awareness about the need for cancer control, the event helped to build coalitions locally when Henzo became connected with other groups doing similar work within their country. Now, read the full story to see where their group is going next!
Posted by Danielle Matia on November 12, 2010 | Comments: 6
From September 24th-26th, the ESH-iCMLf Conference on Chronic Myeloid Leukemia (CML) held in Washington, D.C. brought together over 400 CML experts from all across the world. The forum addressed the biological mechanisms of the disease and treatment, as well as news from clinical trials with third generation therapies. Read the complete blog entry for a selection of highlights from the meeting, as recollected by our Guest Blogger, advocate and CML survivor, Jan Geissler.
Posted by Guest Blogger on November 10, 2010 | Comments: 6
At the Toluca Stadium, while a football match was raging inside the arena; our team was winning outside the stadium by collecting signatures to the World Cancer Declaration.
Posted by Guest Blogger on November 04, 2010 | Comments: 3
This week we were blessed with the opportunity to bring cheer and joy to children undergoing cancer treatment in Seattle. The evening was planned thoroughly: we would bring a craft activity to keep kids entertained, we would bring donated gifts for everyone (not really knowing how many kids would come, we prepared for 50 kids) and, we would bring a magician to put on a show.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on October 29, 2010 | Comments: 3
Since the beginning of this year, the Argentinean patient group known as ALMA has had a growth spurt that has gone rampant and, thus, the group has arrived at three different cities of the country as part of a campaign called “Spreading Life” (Contagiando Vida). In September and October, The Max Foundation and ALMA joined campaigns, and so our enjoined goal became to Maximize and Spread Life throughout Argentina! Buenos Aires, Córdoba and Rosario were the cities chosen – and so, we went on the road…
Posted by Mercedes Arteaga on October 27, 2010 | Comments: 3
One phone call to Salman Khan, the famous Bollywood actor, and he is ready to offer his encouragement to any patient in need of a boost of confidence. Through his own philanthropic organization, Salman has been supporting people facing life threatening diseases for many years. When he learned about the Maximize Life Campaign, he was only too ready to add his name to the World Cancer Declaration, along with a heartfelt support message of his own.
Posted by Viji Venkatesh on October 25, 2010 | Comments: 10
Today we see the culmination of a very special week, Max’s week. A very big thank you to everyone who sent messages of hope and love.
All around the world the Maximize Life Movement seems to be in full activity. Read this blog for a recap of the week and some awesome photos.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on October 22, 2010 | Comments: 3
For those of us who have lost loved ones to cancer, birthday anniversaries are always a difficult time. Having lost Max at the sweet age of 17, one feels such sadness for what could have been. What would he have become? What difference would he have made in the world? Yet, for Max, what could have been is not, but instead, something beautiful has evolved from the darkness: a worldwide movement of hope and courage. Max has become a symbol of hope for many, and today he lives in the hearts of people all around the world.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on October 19, 2010 | Comments: 27
For each of us affected by cancer, the tribute wall of support is a powerful reminder that we are not alone. In fact, waking up each morning we can begin our day by imagining a stadium full of more than 4,000 people clapping and cheering loudly for us in everything we do. More and more people walking into the stadium every day as new support messages are added to the wall.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on October 15, 2010 | Comments: 3
How are our friends living with cancer around the world being affected by the stigma of a diagnosis? And how can we help the world to move beyond the stigma, beyond just acceptance to a place of support for everyone we know and love facing cancer? Max Family patient support group in Malaysia has a message for the community and for the world: Cancer is treatable. There should be no discrimination, no stigma and equal access to treatment no matter where you live.
Posted by Mei Ching Ong on October 13, 2010 | Comments: 8
Un Paso Max, meaning “Un Paso Mas" (One More Step), is a fitting name for an association led by cancer survivors who are willing to take an extra step to help others. Un Paso Max is the name of the CML and GIST patient association in the Dominican Republic. What follows is an account of their journey; an example of the origins of a successful patient group; and a partnership that brings us closer to making cancer a global health priority.
Posted by Susana Sarabia on October 12, 2010 | Comments: 15
Some may think of libraries as just quiet reading rooms, but in Pretoria, South Africa, the Maximize Life Tribute Wall is a reminder that libraries are truly learning centers where the community can bond together for a cause like raising awareness of the needs of people living with cancer worldwide.
Posted by Erin Schwartz on October 11, 2010 | Comments: 3
There is a little girl named Ajulya, who is currently receiving treatment for blood cancer in #31 Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg, Russia. She recently got an infection and was admitted to a special “isolation” room where she cannot interact with other children. It happened that during this isolation time, a group of volunteers from Studio “Da” (“Yes”) and Studio “Melnitsa” (“Windmill”) came to the hospital with a special project as a part of the Maximize Life Global Cancer Awareness Campaign. The project was to teach children about how a cartoon is made and how to create their own!
It took the hard work and dedication of volunteers to make sure everyone could show off their creativity and take a part in the project! Click READ MORE to watch the special cartoon made by Ajulya.
Posted by Nataliya Semez on October 07, 2010 | Comments: 6
Personal testimonials from people living with cancer followed by a performance of traditional Bolivian dance starring a young cancer survivor were highlights of the first ever Celebration of Life in the town of Cochabamba.
Watch the video of the dance performance
The event organized by the leaders of the Asociación de Lucha contra la Leucemia (Fight against Leukemia Association) included over 150 people who came together to celebrate life and each other in the high plains of Bolivia.
Posted by Mercedes Arteaga on October 06, 2010 | Comments: 2
On September 27th, a group of enthusiastic college students in the Philippines rose to their professor’s call to action to put together a blood drive for the benefit people living with leukemia. And the result was an amazing accomplishment! The success of the event was not only the outcome of the blood donations which will be made available to people living with leukemia in their community, it was also the process of doing the activity which unified the class and has motivated them to keep giving back to their community. The experience also inspired an outpouring of written expressions about the event from the student body themselves. This student’s account is just one of the numerous blog entries we received from the class, along with some of their comments about what the bloodletting activity meant to them.
Posted by Guest Blogger on October 05, 2010 | Comments: 58
Far from the central hub of the Maximize Life campaign in Washington USA, the Celebration of Life held in Pune, India, is a magnificent example of friendship, courage, sharing, learning, and maximizing life. What is a global cancer awareness campaign, if not the platform to showcase real life heroes from all corners of the world? What follows is an insider’s account of a magical day in India, made possible by a group of people who chose to step up to a challenge with admirable courage.
Posted by Viji Venkatesh on October 04, 2010 | Comments: 5
On September 25th the Maximize Life Campaign was successfully launched in Seattle! At the “Light the Night” walk that takes place every year around Green Lake Park in Seattle, thousands of people came together to celebrate cancer survivors and honor loved ones who are no longer with us. The Max Foundation has long participated in the event organized by the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, who shares our mission of improving the lives of people affected by blood cancer.
Posted by Nataliya Semez on September 30, 2010 | Comments: 12
This past weekend, scientists and physicians from around the world met at the iCMLf ESH International CML Conference in Washington DC to discuss advances in the treatment of this disease. The conference provided three intense days of meetings. Nevertheless, many took time out of their busy schedule to write messages of support to their patients.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on September 28, 2010 | Comments: 2
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with cancer; if you have experienced the uncertainty of not knowing if treatment was available; if you ever wondered if there is anything you could do to help yourself, your loved one and others, THIS IS THE TIME; THIS IS YOUR CHANCE!
Watch our Call to Action video.
In September 2011, for the first time in history, the United Nations will convene a high level Summit to discuss the burden of cancer and other non-communicable diseases on the world’s needy populations. This is the first time that Heads of State will address the burden of cancer around the world.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on September 22, 2010 | Comments: 9
This October, you will have a unique opportunity to unite with thousands of cancer survivor, caregivers, advocates and concerned citizens, and increase public awareness of the urgent need to put cancer on the global health agenda. The Maximize Life Global Cancer Awareness Campaign will be officially launched simultaneously in Seattle and Washington D.C. on September 25th. These events will be followed by awareness events in numerous locations in over 30 countries around the world. All events will feature the opportunity for survivors, caregivers, and the general public alike to add their name in support of the World Cancer Declaration.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on September 15, 2010 | Comments: 12
The Maximize Life Blog is inspired by you, about you, and for you. Each day, we hear stories through survivors, caregivers, friends and coworkers about people rising above a cancer diagnosis and living life to the fullest. We hear about people who are giving of themselves and giving back to their communities. The Maximize Life Blog is a way to share encouraging stories about friends around the world with friends around the world!
Posted by Erin Schwartz on September 08, 2010 | Comments: 40
Every given week at The Max Foundation, we deal with an entire range of situations and emotions. Our advocates do their work meticulously, professionally, with compassion and dedication, offering love and support, and linking families from all corners of the world with whatever resources are available for help. Two events recently, however, stopped us in our tracks: we received a package, and a very special video.
Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on September 01, 2010 | Comments: 3