The Mission of Arthritis Introspective is to improve the lives of those living with arthritis during the prime of life through wellness education, empowerment and support systems.
AI serves those living with arthritis who are 20 - 50. While our niche is 20 to 50 year olds living with any form of arthritis, AI welcomes anyone 18 or older who feels they can benefit from the services we provide.
Arthritis Introspective (AI) was created to assist an often overlooked population, those of us living with arthritis and/or its related autoimmune diseases during the prime of life. The millions who have been diagnosed with arthritis anywhere from childhood to middle aged we have often heard, “But you’re too young to have arthritis,” or worse, “But you don’t look sick.” Now, in “the prime of life,” we work to balance the demands of college, relationships, careers, parenthood and disability, with the realities of life with a chronic disease. This balancing act can be very difficult and very lonely without the support and understanding of someone else who has been there.
AI fulfills its mission through three different outlets.
1) The National Gathering, our annual conference bringing together AI members from across the country for a weekend of education, empowerment and relationship building, featuring health/wellness experts and motivational speakers, along with plenty of time to socialize and share personal stories. Over the last five years hundreds of people have taken part in this special weekend, plans are underway for the 2013 AI National Gathering (G6) to be held Scottsdale, AZ in May 2013.
2) Local AI Support Systems (SS). Bringing together those living with arthritis within a given area, providing the opportunity for one-on-one support and community. Local Support Systems hold both educational and social events on a regular basis and serve as a source of support and friendship not only for those living with the disease, but for those who love and care for them as well.
3) www.arthritisintrospective.org, our national website (which will soon be getting a makeover), a place for up-to-date information on where to find a local Support System, local AI events, national news and initiatives, inspirational stories, member blogs and links, the AI Gathering newsletter and much more to come.
Arthritis Introspective is the first national non-profit organization founded to address the issues of those living with arthritis in the prime of life and to prove that while surviving another day with the disease is good, learning how to THRIVE in spite of the disease is even better. AI is a fully volunteer-run, 501 (c) 3 organization, relying solely on fundraising, sponsorships and private donations to fulfill its mission. All donations are tax-deductible.
“I may be changed by what happens to me. But I refuse to be reduced by it.” Maya Angelou