Muscular Dystrophy Association
As we gather again for the 2014 IAFF Convention, we are celebrating 60 years of the IAFF’s ongoing commitment to “Fill-the-Boot” for MDA. In conjunction with this remarkable milestone, MDA has completely redesigned its Fill-the-Boot campaign materials for affiliates to use throughout the year. The new design incorporates the “60 Year Strong” message along with imagery of child and fire fighter. These materials, which will continue to be the brand for Fill-the-Boot events, are developed to generate greater awareness that funds collected benefit MDA and support the fight toward muscle health.
The IAFF-MDA partnership remains the fundraising centerpiece of MDA’s sponsorship activities, and is built on continued partnership-building activities and MDA staff development, as well as a variety of resources to support the fundraising program.
The IAFF, our affiliates and MDA have worked hard to increase media exposure in conjunction with kick-off events to promote Fill-the-Boot campaigns and to favorably position our members, fire department management and municipal leadership within their communities, as well as give back to those supporting MDA.
In 2013, we mourned the passing of one of Shaun Probert, a member of Shaker Heights, OH Local 516, to ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease). Shaun spoke about his fight against the disease at the 2012 Convention.
In May of 2013, the IAFF welcomed San Antonio, TX Local 624 member Roger Lopez as the new IAFF-MDA Coordinator. Roger has spent many years dedicating his time to both MDA and the IAFF. With his new position as IAFF-MDA National Coordinator, Roger will be expanding his efforts across North America assisting our members in their fundraising activities.
MDA, like many nonprofit organizations, has faced difficulties brought on by a challenging U.S. economy. MDA has continued to seek and implement ways to streamline its business structure, resulting in cost reductions while still supporting vital fundraising programs to meet expected operational and program obligations and goals.
For the first time, in 2013, the Show of Strength Telethon was broadcast on ABC television stations across the country. Our move to the ABC network guaranteed a significant increase in viewership over 2012. The format of MDA’s Telethon – its flagship fundraising event – changed from a two-day marathon to a more modern production involving much higher profile acts packed into a two hour show. In addition to several A-list entertainment acts, the show featured many IAFF affiliates and the work they do year-round to support MDA. The show also featured much-improved recognition of MDA’s national sponsor partners, foremost being the IAFF. Over the course of the two hours, our union, affiliates and members were recognized in a number of ways and at a much higher frequency than any other sponsor.
An estimated 1,700 affiliates held more than 2,000 events in support of MDA IN 2013, raising $26,155,663 – an increase of $700,000 (3 percent) over 2012.