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NAAF - May 2015


Research Funding Opportunities Announced at Major Dermatologic Conference 

NAAF is pleased to publicize the release of 2015 Research Funding Announcements (RFAs) that outline Research Grant opportunities the support scientists and clinicians at various career stages and in numerous aspects of the field to pursue promising research ideas and innovative projects that will advance the development or discovery of safe, effective, affordable treatments and a cure for alopecia areata.  

These RFAs were publicized at the Society for Investigative Dermatology (SID) conference in Atlanta, Georgia in early May.  This was a fitting venue for announcing RFAs since this meeting draws the top researchers from dermatology and related specialties and disciplines.  Over 15 scientific posters representing new and exciting alopecia areata research were on display.  Many of these were selected for oral presentations during minisymposia.  NAAF staff attending the SID had the opportunity to meet young, up-and-coming investigators, hear from seasoned researchers and network with industry representatives at the National Alopecia Areata Foundation Reception & Alopecia Areata Research Update.  

In addition to Investigator-Initiated Grants, NAAF is also providing Bridge Funding Grants to support promising investigators who are revising outstanding National Institutes of Health award applications.  Awards range from $1,500-$100,000. The deadline for application submission is August 1, 2015.  Learn more about NAAF research grant opportunities and how to apply.
NAAF Approved for a $50,000 Engagement Award by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute 

?We are pleased to announce that NAAF was approved for a Eugene Washington PCORI Engagement Award by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) to support NAAF’s Annual Patient Support Conference this June! 

The conference brings together patients, partners, physicians, researchers and industry, providing an ideal forum for patient partner engagement, support and community leadership development. Individuals with alopecia areata and their loved ones gather together to share their experiences with one another and to learn directly from leading scientists and medical professionals about the latest research efforts, treatment options, and opportunities for patient engagement.  The Conference is widely referred to as “the treatment until we find a cure". See complete article.


Two Great Spring Fundraisers

On April 18, Camille Weas and her daughter Hannah hosted the “Hair to There” 5K Run & Walk.  It was such a rousing success, we asked Hannah to tell us more about it.  The following is her account:

“The saying ‘Bald, Bold, Beautiful’ is one that has grown near and dear to my heart during my journey with alopecia areata.  Not only have these three words inspired me throughout the years, but for the past two years they have also served as the slogan for the ‘Hair to There’ 5K Run & Walk.  I started this event, with the help of my family, to provide an event for others in the alopecia areata community and to raise money for NAAF.  With the success of the first annual race under our wings, we set out to raise over $30,000 for the foundation.  On a beautiful Minnesota spring day nearly 600 runners and walkers gathered to raise money and support for NAAF and enjoy a fun and inspiring event.  As the first few participants began to trickle in, I could feel the support for those that are living with alopecia areata.  When the gun went off to start the run, the hundreds of smiling faces passing by not only represented the success of the event but also the start of a community.  As I looked around at those in attendance, I saw so much more than just runners and supporters, I saw the true meaning of “Bald, Bold, Beautiful” perpetuated through each and every participant and their families.  When all was said and done the race earned $37,000 for the foundation but more importantly it raised the spirits, hopes and aspirations of the alopecia areata community to live a life “Bald, Bold, and Beautiful’.” 


Meanwhile in New York, the powerhouse team of Rob Goldberg, Lindsay Ryan and Arianna Hoeppner hosted their second mega-successful Cheers for cHAIRity fundraiser in Lower Manhattan.  Held at the fashionable Up & Down club, this exclusive soiree featured an open bar, hors d’ouvres, dancing and prizes.  Some 150 attendees enjoyed this incredibly popular event, and a total of $32,000 was raised for NAAF.  "With generous contributions pouring in from local businesses and countless kind donors,” Arianna tells us, “Cheers for cHAIRity united so many individuals in the shared mission to raise funds for NAAF and spread awareness about alopecia areata all while serving up a fun dose of entertainment, dancing, cocktails, and fabulous silent auction items and giveaways!"

Want to hold a fundraiser of your own?  We want to help you!  Please contact Laura Ralph ?
?NAAF Support Group Leader Spotlight – Amy Meservey

Amy Meservey of Crystal Lake, IL, has had alopecia areata since the age of 13. “My personal preference is to go wig free,” she says, “but I always feel that is an individual choice and it is the choice that is right for me.”?
Amy decided to start a local support group after encountering a teenage girl at a local fast food restaurant who asked Amy whether she had alopecia alopecia. “She leaned into me and said she had it too,” Amy recalls and hadn’t seen anyone else with alopecia areata before.” That chance meeting made Amy realize “we needed a support group in our area.”


The Crystal Lake group is still relatively new, but they have already had pizza parties, dietary restriction meetings, and have invited experts in wigs and hair wraps to meet with the group.  They are currently scheduling a family picnic event for both the Crystal Lake and St. Charles support groups which they hope to hold in August.  Amy and several group members are currently training for the Naperville, IL half-marathon for which the St. Charles support group co-leader has reserved charity spots for NAAF.  “When I started the group I was very comfortable with my baldness, and thought others might need a group,” confides Amy.  “I have found, though, that I need the group as much as everyone else does. There is a sense of comfort to being surrounded by those who just get what you might be going through.

If you would like to start a support group in your community, please contact Laura Ralph at 415-472-3780.  To find your nearest NAAF support group, 
visit our support page on our website. 
Four Stars in Charity Navigator

It is our privilege to announce that for the second consecutive year, NAAF has received a coveted 4-star rating from Charity Navigator.  This rating does not come easily; only 19% of all charities on their site meet this high standard.  According to Charity Navigator Founder and Board Chair John P. Dugan, “This ‘exceptional’ designation from Charity Navigator differentiates [the] National Alopecia Areata Foundation from its peers and demonstrates to the public it is worthy of their trust.”  See for yourself! 


Alopecia Areata Marketplace Product Spotlight of the Month - May 2015

Head to Toe Jewels features wig and hair accessories designed to enhance the look and self-confidence of the wearer.  Our soft and adjustable headbands are perfect for hiding thinning hair, and our trendy fashion turbans are available in several colors and patterns suitable for more coverage.


We are happy to introduce the Dream Cap, perfect for lounging or sleeping in style!  The Dream Cap is available in a variety of colors with a splash of sparkle!  These are made in the U.S.A. from comfortable and breathable 100% cotton.

Please enter "NAAF" into the coupon code box upon checkout, then click apply.  You will receive a 5% discount on your sales order and we will donate 10% of your order to the National Alopecia Areata Foundation.  We look forward to helping clients feel good from Head to Toe!

Biopharma development, support, and fundraising are just a few ways NAAF is there for you and everyone in the alopecia areata community.  Keep up with all of our news, announcements and activities by following us on Facebook and Twitter!


Gary Sherwood
Communications Director

P.S. If you’re an alopecia areata researcher, be sure to take advantage of NAAF’s Research Grant opportunities.  Apply now!


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