Meet the senior team. Below, they give their thoughts on their team's achievements over the 2009-10 financial year.
A note from the Chairman
Chairman - Bill Ronald
The charity has had a successful year surmounting many obstacles presented by the challenging economic climate.
We continued our support for first-class research at leading centres and, for the first time in the charity’s history, we established a Lay Research Committee which enables families to have a direct say in the research projects that we fund. We are particularly delighted that our support for research over many years has been instrumental in the progress that has led to clinical trials getting under way for Duchenne muscular dystrophy.
The Tesco Charity of the Year partnership raised a staggering £5.6 million, enabling us to provide equipment for hundreds of children and young people. The partnership also helped us spread our message far and wide through the massive press and media coverage achieved across the UK.
Our fight to ensure everyone living with muscle disease has access to comprehensive, specialist services saw us influencing ministers, parliamentarians and NHS decision makers, and we secured a breakthrough in the West Midlands where NHS funding for two additional consultants and three Care Advisors was agreed. Our campaigns have also led to full NHS-funding for 23 Care Advisors being put in place across the UK from April 2011.
Reaching and providing support to more people is an ongoing goal and we saw a 50% increase in traffic across our websites. The new clinical trials updates, publications downloads and Bradley pages proved to be the biggest draw for visitors.
Thank you to all our supporters, families and volunteers whose contributions and hard work have helped to make these successes possible.
A note from the directors
Chief Executive - Robert Meadowcroft
The Muscular Dystrophy Campaign continues to lead the fight against muscle-wasting conditions by funding high-calibre research to find treatments and cures for muscular dystrophy and related neuromuscular conditions; adding strength to its campaigning voice to improve healthcare and to support clinicians and health professionals; raising awareness of its cause and growing the number of volunteers and supporters who help the charity. And we will continue to work towards making the charity ever more relevant to the people we are here to help and support – the individuals and families affected by muscle-wasting conditions.
Director of Development- Rebecca Day
Families are at the heart of all we do. The tremendous efforts of all those involved in family fundraising, volunteer committees and branches and as individuals, enables us to fund critical research to develop treatments and cures and provide vital ongoing practical support to people affected by muscle wasting conditions.
With no Government funding we rely entirely on family and community fundraising, corporate partnerships, events and individual donations and legacies to support our work. We have a good UK-wide network in place to help everyone to fundraise in the way they choose, whether it be at work, through collections or events, by joining a committee or making an individual donation... and with a wide variety of work programmes funds can be directed to the specific area of our supporters' interest. Please get involved - just give us a call!
Director of Campaigns, Care and Information - Nic Bungay
Our information service provides individuals and families affected by neuromuscular conditions with free practical and emotional support, via our central care and support team. Thanks to our hard work with people living with muscle disease, clinicians and the NHS, we are now seeing more Muscular Dystrophy Care Advisors in post than ever before. Backed by our Parliamentary Groups across the UK, the NHS is starting to invest in essential, specialist neuromuscular services.
Director of Research - Dr Marita Pohlschmidt
One main focus has been the provision of support to the scientific community to develop treatments and cures. We invested £927,000 in basic and clinical research projects. For the first time in the charity’s history we started to directly involve the voice of our families and supporters in research decisions through the establishment of a Lay Research Committee; ensuring we fund the best and most relevant science for people affected by muscle-wasting conditions.