The National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association (NFMCPA)’s Organizational Growth
Jan Chambers, president and founder of the NFMCPA, recognized the need for an organization to bring together advocacy, research and education for the fibromyalgia (FM) and overlapping conditions community. Advocacy, research and education are the keys to a better quality of life for people with FM and someday a cure. The NFMCPA is committed to building bridges that will unite the FM community with national leaders in public policy, healthcare and science. Furthermore the NFMCPA is committed to uniting a voice for FM and overlapping conditions.
In an effort to advance the purposes of advocacy and research, Jan founded the NFMCPA in early 2011. Her previous organization, CURE FM, became the research advocacy branch of this newly organized charitable foundation. In March of 2011, the NFMCPA received programs from the National Fibromyalgia Association (NFA) and accepted responsibility to carry programs forward with its constituents. Grateful for the chance to further its involvement with the FM community, the NFMCPA accepted all new responsibilities associated with this exchange. As an independent and self-governing organization, the NFMCPA will actively participate in the FM community on a variety of fronts, including its primary campaign to help find a cure for FM.
How does the NFMCPA operate?
Corporate decisions are made by the president of the NFMCPA, Jan Chambers, and she is supported by staff in Utah. The NFMCPA is proud to announce that Sharon Waldrop and Tom Hintz have accepted positions as officers in its organization. Sharon is the NFMCPA’s Vice-President for Education and will also continue as Director of the Fibromyalgia Association of Michigan. She will manage issues related to patient and physician education. Tom is the Vice-President for Community Support and will also continue his work as the President of the Wisconsin Fibromyalgia Association. Tom will manage support and education groups and self-help issues.
With careers spanning three decades, their unique professional skills contribute to the strength of the NFMCPA. Drawing on personal perspectives of living with FM and overlapping conditions, their dedicated leadership brings ideas and vision to the future of improving the quality of life to those affected by fibromyalgia and overlapping conditions.
As founding members of the Leaders Against Pain Coalition©, Jan, Sharon, and Tom believe in the ability of a united voice to change policy regarding barriers to access care and also disparity issues. Working together since June of 2008, these three share a common respect for the daunting tasks that immediately and in the future face our community. The bond of caring deeply about others affected by fibromyalgia is a strong one that unites them across the country as they work together from their individual offices in Utah, Michigan, and Wisconsin.
Under Jan’s direction, the Leaders Against Pain Coalition (LAPC - the advocacy arm of the NFMCPA) advocates for change in policy towards access to care barriers. The Coalition was successfully launched in 2011 after three years of planning. The mission of the NFMCPA’s LAPC is to represent and advocate on behalf of people affected by fibromyalgia and overlapping conditions on critical issues including the right to good health and a high quality of life. The Coalition meets regularly.
The members of the Executive Committee are trained Leaders Against Pain©–Sherril Johnson, Cindy Sharp, Lannette Johnson, Angie Gravois, Tom Hintz, and Jan Chambers. Sharon Waldrop and Michael Peterman are advisors to the Coalition.
Thank you to the LAPC Executive Committee members who are volunteering their time and committing their resources and talents to serving the FM community. The NFMCPA will continue to update you on the progress of the LAPC’s work and how you can get involved with “My Voice Matters©.”
Additionally, CURE FM, acting as the research branch of the NFMCPA, will provide interested persons the opportunity to learn about what is being done to cure FM and how they can contribute to the cause.
The NFMCPA leadership is associated with several fibromyalgia patient organizations and individual advocates across the nation through the LAPC members. (Utah Fibromyalgia Association, Fibromyalgia Association of Michigan, Wisconsin Fibromyalgia Association, Wisconsin Fibromyalgia Network, Fibromyalgia Education & Support Network of Arkansas, Health and Wellness Resources of Mississippi, Colorado Fibromyalgia Network, Georgia Area FM Support Group, Fibromyalgia Association of Houston, Inland Empire Autoimmune Support Group, O.F.F.E.R., and New York Fibromyalgia Association). The NFMCPA advocates with the U.S. Pain Foundation, American Pain Foundation, Pain Care Forum, P.A.N.D.O.R.A., and Coalition 4 Fibromyalgia. For more information, please visit fmcpaware.org/community.
The NFMCPA needs your support in accomplishing our mission – improving the quality of life for people with FM and advocating for a cure. Get involved today by registering and signing up for important email alerts at fmcpaware.org and becoming a fan on Facebook (facebook.com/NFMCPA). Thank you!
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