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2016 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Cancer, Cancer Research, Health

Mission: The mission of the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation (Meso Foundation) is to eradicate mesothelioma as a life-ending disease. Malignant mesothelioma is a rare cancer of the linings of the chest or abdomen. Asbestos exposure is the only known cause. The Meso Foundation solicits and rigorously reviews applications, and then awards significant grants, for research on the prevention, early detection, and treatment of mesothelioma. Through its web site and literature, its direct communications, and annual International Symposium on Malignant Mesothelioma, the Foundation provides patients, family members and physicians with hope, encouragement, and information. The Meso Foundation employs a full-time mesothelioma nurse practitioner to help patients navigate their treatments. In addition, the Foundation works to enhance awareness of this disease and to encourage federal funding for research.

Programs: The Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation (also known as the Meso Foundation) is the only 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to eradicating mesothelioma and easing the suffering caused by this cancer. It does so by focusing on four main program areas: • RESEARCH: Funding and support of the highest level of peer-reviewed mesothelioma research; • EDUCATION: Educating patients, their families, risk populations, and the public at large about mesothelioma; • SUPPORT: Providing patient support services; • ADVOCACY: Advocating Congress for increased federal funding for mesothelioma research. The Meso Foundation is the only non-government funder of peer-reviewed scientific research to establish life-saving treatments for mesothelioma. To date, the Foundation has directly awarded over $8.7 million and, through its advocacy efforts, has directed another $8.9 million to promising mesothelioma research.

Community Stories

60 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have been associated with the Foundation for almost five years. I've been to their symposiums, done fundraisers, participated on their facebook groups and mentored other patients. The staff and board of this Foundation is top notch in my book. They keep things personal with all patients. We can call, meet with them or corrrespond by phone and email. Really a dedicated and caring group of people in my book. They have ceryainly helped me and I can say that I know many more patients who owe their lives to this organization. Bob Brittingham, 302-381-1292, bobbrittsemail@gmail.com . Meso patient.

Client Served

Rating: 5

This is a fantastic organisation that is committed to finding a cure for mesothelioma ..In addition it provides support for patients and their families.They are a fantastic source of the most upto date information on treatment methods and ways of managing symptoms

I am so grateful this organisation exists it gives us hope for the future.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Most amazing foundation truely dedicated to research.

1 Cheryl180

Client Served

Rating: 5

My mother was diagnosed with Mesothelioma in 2014. The Meso Foundation served so many roles for us over the last two years -- expert knowledge of doctors, trials, treatments, caregiving, and side effects. Mary's straightforward, compassionate conversations and friendship during Mom's end of life this summer during my time of need was invaluable and much appreciated.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I attended the October 7, 2016 Mesothelioma Symposium in Chicago as the 'caregiver' of a patient, my husband. I arrived alone, a bit apprehensive not knowing what to expect. The group was very welcoming, it was wonderful to realize there were many other patients and families struggling with the same disease and issues.

The agenda and experts were stellar, the Q & A portions moved right along, the lunch provided was outstanding.
I learned about the Facebook group, and now have additional resources to use in the future, because that's the one thing there is available to us, a FUTURE!

I would recommend the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation to anyone with an interest in the disease, as a parent, caregiver, or clinician.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

MARF is the only place to go for Mesothelioma information. The money goes to research to help understand this very rare form of cancer. God Bless them and the work they do!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I stumbled upon this foundation in my research for patient assistance when my husband was diagnosed with Mesothelioma a year ago. The foundation provides both financial and educational assistance for patients and their loved ones. Their executive director, Mary Hesdorffer, RN is incredibly knowledgeable and helpful in advising and educating patients about the different clinical trials available for treatment of Mesothelioma. She is dedicated to helping patients getting the help they need and has been incredible helpful to us. I highly recommend this foundation.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation brings together patients, physicians, policymakers, caregivers, researchers, the bereaved, donors, and activists in a community whose goals are the alleviation of suffering in current patients, the advancement of medical knowledge that can move us toward new treatments and perhaps a cure, the increase of awareness about the disease and the ubiquitous nature of its cause (asbestos), the constant and sophisticated support for the families who support the patients, and the necessary political advocacy to further funding to accomplish all of the former. It is a non-profit, alone in its field. The professionals running the Foundation are tireless, selfless, and indispensable.
I, like so many of my peers, am alive in no small part because of how these people live their lives.

1 Beth182

Client Served

Rating: 5

Meso Foundation has been awesome support to my family. My husband was diagnosed with Meso in 2014 and has undergone several types of treatments. The volunteers and staff at the foundation have been helpful in directing us to other options as well as supporting us emotionally through connecting us to others who have been through this.

3 Raya B.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation Inc Is THE organization that drives awareness, fund raising for research, and life saving guidance for and about the deadly asbestos- caused cancer- mesothelioma. The Foundations symposia are the resource for both scientists and patients and their families. This is truly a life changing organization. It has made it possible for me to continue to live with hope.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

Mary Hesdorfer and the entire group have provided tremendous help and support to me as a mesothelioma patient. This support has potentially saved my life and has helped me look into every treatment option, including very current advances in research.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

A great resource and support for mesothelioma patients and their families.

4

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Mesothelioma Research Foundation was an incredible source of hope and knowledge for me when I was diagnosed in 2007. They helped my husband get me to the right doctors and gave us support and the ability to interact with others who were going through the same situation. Over the last 8 years I have been able to use their wealth of knowledge to help me whenever I have questions or concerns. They have created a community for patients and caregivers that is essential when dealing with this disease.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Meso Foundation is one of a kind, literally. This wonderful non-profit serves many needs of the meso patients and their caregivers. From travel grants to the latest medical trials and research, our meso journey would not have been the same without this wonderful group of knowledgeable, compassionate people.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

When I was told to contact the Mesothelioma Foundation after my husbands diagnosis I was apprehensive. Not sure if this was going to be another secretly fueled Lawyer website. I did call but was still unsure. There were so many questions about the disease and treatment. As well as the immediate unknown about how our life was going to change without an income.
It was only after I contacted another family that also had just been diagnosed with Mesothelioma and heard their first hand account of how the foundation had answered all the unknowns that I made my second call to the foundation.
And after that second call and over the next two years the foundation guided us through surgery, recovery, chemo, radiation by giving us the tools to make informed descisions. In addition, with the support (closed and private) groups online I could always ask another family a question and receive a firsthand opinion from someone or from many who have walked that mile in my shoes. The online support groups were the day to day support that helped me as a caregiver get through the best days and the worst days of my husbands treatment. As someone once told me "it's the worst way to meet the best people". I hold the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation in the highest esteem. The help and guidance we received was like being embraced by a family and guided by angels every step of the way.

2 Stacey51

Client Served

Rating: 5

My father passed away from mesothelioma eight years ago. When he was diagnosed, it was almost impossible to find quality information about the disease or doctors who were experts, let alone familiar with this "orphan" form of cancer. Our entire family was extremely frightened, confused and had no idea how to help my dad cope with the journey which lay ahead of him By chance, my sister came across the name of the Foundation and spoke with Chris Hahn (who was there at the time) and later, Mary Hesdorffer. These individuals along with others, helped us to make sense of the available medical treatment (no cure) at the time, and gave us referrals to oncologists (and hospital programs) who were extremely experienced and who helped my father put up the most valiant fight he could and retain his dignity until the day he passed away. My dad (a Navy veteran and former Brooklyn Navy Yard employee) was put in touch with others battling the disease for information, support and friendship. The caregivers' support board and Mary were always available to answer questions and offer kind words in our time of need. I honestly do not know what we would have done without being able to turn to the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation and its incredible team of volunteers.









2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Totally run by professionals who work with Mesothelioma patients and families by educating and supporting them. There is no organization with better medical knowledge of this disease. Their nurse practioner knows and has contact with every mesotheioma specialist and is constantly up-to-date on newest clinical trials.

Previous Stories
3

Client Served

Rating: 5

I volunteer to help others overcome living with Mesothelioma. This organization helped save my life, it's the least I can do to help it help other patients and community.

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3

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation deserves a huge amount of credit for the fact that my husband is alive today.

In 2012, my husband was diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma. It was difficult to find resources because it's an exceptionally rare disease, and we needed someone with experience who could treat it in the abdomen -- unlike most meso patients who need treatment in the lungs. There are very few experienced surgeons in the U.S. for peritoneal mesothelioma, and it was daunting to wade through the internet to find one because even though we live in one of the largest cities in the country, there wasn't a single oncologist in town who specialized in treating peritoneal meso.

The Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation not only helped us to find experienced onocological surgeons, but provided guidance and counsel. My husband's cancer didn't image on CT scans (it was found in the pathology after his appendix was removed), so moving forward with the drastic treatment of HIPEC--the standard of care for peritoneal meso--was scary. I can't imagine having done it without the experience, wisdom, and guidance of Mary Hefsdorffer at the Foundation.

After my husband's HIPEC surgery, there were tons of life-threatening complications. It has been and continues to be a rough road, but the Foundation has provided education and emotional support. They have helped us to attend conferences where we've learned first hand from doctors, researches, survivors and bereaved about this disease.

The Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation has had an incredibly profound impact on my life. I'm forever grateful for everything they do!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Mesolthelioma Applied Research Foundation is nothing short of wonderful in dealing with patients dealing with this disease and their caregivers. They are ALWAYS available to answer questions and are in the know on everything about this disease, whether it is related to doctors, drugs, clinical trials, etc.. I would, without a doubt, direct anybody facing this disease their way.

2 Robin82

Client Served

Rating: 5

In the fall of 2007 my fiancee Brian was diagnosed with mesothelioma. Needless to say were were devastated. This being a rare cancer, we knew we had to seek out a Dr and hospital who dealt with this cancer on a regular basis to give Brian his best chance of survival.
I had read about Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation (MARF) in a nursing journal only 1 month prior to Brian's diagnosis. I did not realize at the time how serendipitous that was. I found that article and contacted them. I spoke with the nurse practitioner, Mary, who ultimately helped guide us all the way through the 2 years of treatment with where to find resources and physicians, advice for chemotherapy related issues, and even just listening a time or 2. I believe in my heart that Brian would not have had those 2 years had it not been for this organization and their expertise, guidance, and knowledge of leading experts in this field. Thank you so much for all you do.

Previous Stories
2

Client Served

Rating: 5

My fiancee Brian Holton was diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma in October of 2006. As one might imagine, we were devastated and did not know where to turn as the oncologist Brian had initially seen had no idea what to do with him. It took him 4 weeks to get around to ordering a biopsy for Brian. Fortunately one of my co-workers had seen a current article about mesothelioma in a medical journal and the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation (MARF) was featured in this article. It had contact information for Mary Hesdorffer RN, NP and I contacted her straight away.

Mary called me back the next day and spoke to me at length about mesothelioma and what our next steps should be. She put us in touch with the experts at New York-Presbyterian Hospital where there were doctors and nurses who dealt with this rare cancer on a regular basis. Over the next several months of chemotherapy Brian's tumor shrunk by 60%. However within that first year Brian's health insurance no longer allowed him to seek treatment out of state and again Mary Hesdorffer, through MARF, assisted us in finding a capable doctor. Also through MARF I was able to connect with other patients and caregivers going through the same thing we were which was a blessing for us.

As Brian's cancer progressed the local oncologist ran out of options for Brian. I got in touch with MARF, and Mary again put us in touch with a researcher at the National Cancer Institute, a division of the National Institute of Health, who specialized in mesothelioma. We went for treatment for several months until finally Brian succumbed to mesothelioma in 2008.

I believe that the two additional years Brian survived after his diagnosis, and they were good/happy years for us, was possible because of the expertise and help of this wonderful organization.