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National Resources:

The American Brain Tumor Association (ABTA) exists to eliminate brain tumors through research and to meet the needs of brain tumor patients and their families. Beginning in 1973, the ABTA is the oldest organization furthering the efforts of research and patient education services.  They focus on advancing research and patient education services. The ABTA is a steadfast advocate on behalf of the brain tumor community in the United States, & we are here to help patients, caregivers, & their loved ones as they navigate the brain tumor journey.

Mission

Mission:

  • The mission of the American Brain Tumor Association is to advance the understanding and treatment of brain tumors with the goals of improving, extending and, ultimately, saving the lives of those impacted by a brain tumor diagnosis.

Commitments

Commitments:

  • Increase research funding
  • Improve the quality of information available to patients and their caregivers
  • Boost the number of newly diagnosed patients who need information right away, so they can make informed treatment decisions
  • Serve as the voice of the brain tumor community

Impact

Impact:

  • Breakthrough for Brain Tumors 5k Run & Walk: Since 2006, Our breakthrough for Brain Tumors 5k Run & Walk has raised over $32 Million for brain tumor research and support services!
  • Research: Since 1976, the ABTA has awarded more than $32 million in research grants to scientists from around the world.
  • CareLine: Each year, an average of 1,300+ brain tumor patients & caregivers are connected with information & resources of which 75% reported they found the info helpful or very helpful, & 55% reported feeling less distressed after speaking with CareLine staff.
  • Patient & Caregiver Support: Nearly 150 brain tumor patients & caregivers annually are connected with a peer mentor, increasing their sense of support & ability to navigate the brain tumor journey.
  • Patient & Family Educational Meetings: Free to attend, more than 200 patients, caregivers, families, volunteers, & medical professionals across the country have pointed to the high-quality, informative topics that connects all attendees.
  • Volunteer Fundraising Events: Volunteers across the US held more than 50 fundraising events, raising over half a million dollars.
  • Connections Support Community: 17,000+ members on Connections, the ABTA online support group, have found advice & info from the brain tumor community in the U.S. & around the world.

National Brain Tumor Society (NBTS) unrelentingly invests in, mobilizes, & unites the brain tumor community to discover a cure, deliver effective treatments, & advocate for patients & caregivers. Building on over 30 years of experience, they’re the largest patient advocacy organization in the United States committed to curing brain tumors and improving the lives of patients & families. With thousands beside them, their collective voices & actions are a powerful force for progress.

Mission

Mission:

  • National Brain Tumor Society (NBTS) unrelentingly invests in, mobilizes, & unites the brain tumor community to discover a cure, deliver effective treatments, & advocate for patients & caregivers

Vision

Vision:

  • Conquering and curing brain tumors — once and for all.

Values

Values:

  • Patients First: We are fiercely committed to providing a voice & community for all individuals impacted by brain tumors
  • Best-in-Class Science and Service to Our Community: We adhere to rigors standards across our scientific & community initiatives
  • Constructive, Candid, and Transparent: We practice fearless candor by being honest, accountable, & transparent in all that we do
  • Relentlessly Results Driven: We set aggressive goals, active measurable results, account for our work, & accurately report our progress. We drive positive change & have the courage to disrupt the system & take risks to achieve our goals
  • Committed to Public Trust: We are prudent stewards of donors’ funds & conduct our organization openly, operate efficiently, & communicate frequently
  • Collaborative and Inclusive: We believe that working with others is critically important to achieving our mission
  • Positive (Can-Do) Attitude: We believe a positive attitude is essential for achieving our goals
  • Strengthened by Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: We embrace a culture of equity, inclusion, & all forms of difference where we each can confidently express our authentic selves.

Impact

Impact:

  • Research: Due to NBTS’s advocacy efforts in collaboration with the brain tumor community, NIH funding for brain tumor research increased by $20 million to $435 million.
  • Advancing Brain Tumor Research: NBTS launched the DNA Damage Response Consortium, in partnership with Yale Cancer Center, in early 2022. The consortium brings together a diverse team of renowned adult & pediatric researchers, from 9 major cancer centers, to rapidly advance a new class of promising potential treatments that can slow & stop a crucial mechanism of how brain tumors grow.

Local Resources:

EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES

ND Vocational Rehabilitation    

HEALTH & WELLNESS

YMCA Live Strong Program

FREE wellness program designed for cancer survivors

MEDICAID ELIGABILITY 

State of ND Medicaid / Medicaid Expansion – Health Insurance

COUNSELING/ COMMUNICATION TRAINING

Center for Compassion & Creativity

PATIENT SUPPORT

WiTT- “We’re in This Together”

Platform created to make it easy for patients to ASK for help & make it easy for people to GIVE. It combines the simplicity of a wedding registry w/ the personalized needs of a patient & a financial tool, into an easy-to-use platform.

FINANCIAL

Lend a Hand Up/ Dakota Medical Foundation

CHILDREN

Camp Kesem

A FREE summer camp for children who have a parent that has been diagnosed with cancer.

Kamp KACE – Kids Against Cancer Everywhere 

A FREE summer camp for school-aged kids with cancer and their siblings.

Maren lives in Fargo, ND, and became part of the brain tumor community when her husband, Patrick, was diagnosed with a tumor in 2017. Despite multiple surgeries and challenges, Maren and Patrick have not lost their love for life, and still are full of optimism and joy. Together, they have five children, and in Maren's spare time she enjoys camping, family game nights and spending time with friends. Maren first became involved with Pray for Gray as a volunteer, and is now a board member! She is excited to be on this journey with such a wonderful community.

Ashley is a mother to two beautiful children Ava and Alijah. She is dedicated to creating a brighter world for her children to grow up in. As an occupation, Ashley works in corporate accounting for Microsoft. Prior to moving to Fargo in 2016, Ashley attended college with in Bemidji. In 2018, Ashley’s young daughter Ava was diagnosed with brain cancer. Pray for Grey served as a great resource to the family and maintains a very special place in her heart. Ashley is dedicated to serving others in their time of need as she continues to navigate and celebrate uncharted territories with her daughter. In her free time, Ashley enjoys spending time with her children, photography, and loves home and crafting projects.

After obtaining Bachelor's degrees in Psychology and Child & Family Development, Hiliary completed Master's work in Human Development, while starting her career in the disability field. Hiliary has been a disability specialist since 2010, and has served as the CEO for a disability non-profit since 2015. Hiliary began her time as Executive Director with Pray for Gray in March 2023, and brings her past personal and professional experiences to the Pray for Gray team. Hiliary is passionate about the nonprofit world and seeks to bring growth and new opportunities to Pray for Gray. When she isn't working, Hiliary enjoys spending her time with her family and friends, traveling, and experiencing new adventures.

Brad Schenck worked as a Moorhead Police Officer for 16 years, and served on the SWAT team during his time as an officer. He also served in the marine corps and the ND Air Guard. After experiencing vision, reading and memory difficulties, Brad was diagnosed with a brain tumor. 80% ot the tumor was removed and radiation and chemo were completed. However, after experiencing a seizure later on, Brad had discovered his tumor had returned. The return of the tumor forced Brad to retire from both the police department and the military. Since, Brad has become a Pray for Gray Board Member to help others who are experiencing similar journeys. When not assisting with Pray for Gray, Brad spends his time with his wife and three kids. He enjoys spending time at the lake in the summer and Mexico in the winter.

Candice Ahmann is a Partner at Express Employment Professionals and has dedicated the last 15 years to the hiring and recruitment industry while helping businesses grow. Candice graduated from North Dakota State University, met her late husband Craig, and has now been in Fargo for almost 20 years. Candice first learned about Pray for Gray as Craig was a past honoree and lost his battle to brain cancer in the Fall of 2019. Candice joined the Board of Directors in 2021 to help other families like theirs while continuing to honor her husbands’ legacy. In her free time, Candice volunteers with the business community and other non-profits such as the National Brain Tumor Society. Candice continues to reside in Fargo and stays busy with her two boys.   

Grant lives in Grand Forks, ND with his wife Lindsey, and two kids Addison and Lincoln. Grant works for the North Dakota Highway Patrol as a Trooper. Grant first learned about Pray for Gray after Addison was diagnosed with a Medulloblastoma brain tumor in December 2022. Pray for Gray has been there for the Wosick family from the beginning and has graciously given them gifts of support, wisdom, strength, hope, empathy, love, and a sense of community without hesitation. Grant joined the Board of Directors in 2023 to help other families like his and advocate for those with brain tumors/cancer.