Arthritis Introspective (AI) has a long legacy of bringing people with arthritis together and fostering meaningful connections within communities. With the merger of Arthritis Introspective into the Arthritis Foundation, Arthritis Support Networks provides personalized help & support to adults with all types of arthritis and rheumatic diseases in all stages of adulthood. The people who participate in our programs range from individuals who are newly diagnosed to individuals who have been living with arthritis for decades. Many have often heard "you’re too young to have arthritis" or "you don’t look sick". All face the unique challenges of balancing the demands of school, career, relationships, family and/or retirement while dealing with the reality of living with a chronic disease(s). This balancing act can be very difficult and very lonely without the support and understanding of others that has been there and really get it.
Arthritis Foundaton Purpose Statement: The Arthritis Foundation is boldly pursuing a cure for America’s #1 cause of disability, while championing the fight against arthritis with life-changing resources, science, advocacy and community connections.
Program Goals: Arthritis Support Networks provides personalized help and support to adults living with all types of arthritis and rheumatic conditions. Our programs offer opportunities for connection, education and empowerment via support groups and conferences.
We address the emotional, social, and practical challenges of living with arthritis and its related rheumatic diseases. We create opportunities for:
- Connection - Building relationships and creating a community of support for people living with arthritis and their adult loved ones.
- Education - Learning life hacks, coping skills and self-management strategies with an emphasis on evidence based wellness education.
- Empowerment - Gaining the knowledge, confidence and resilience to be an empowered patient and not just survive with arthritis but thrive!
Vision: To ensure that people with any form of arthritis and rheumatic disease are empowered to not just survive with arthritis but thrive!
Arthritis Support Network Programs
Local Outreach - Local Arthritis Support Networks (ASN) provide a supportive social connection within a geographic area. These support groups share a common goal of bringing people together for activities focused on mutual support and positive coping strategies for living well. ASNs are guided by trained volunteer leaders and are tailored to each group’s needs. They provide frequent educational and social activities and serve as a resource both for people living with arthritis and their loved ones. Group participants become self-advocates and develop self-management skills. Our nationwide network of peer-led, local groups strengthens one's ability to be a Champion of Yes!
Annual Gathering Conference - Each year National Gathering Conference attendees meet for a multi-day education event geared toward learning, bonding, and developing important skills in self managment and mutual support. The Gathering Conference is an educational and fun weekend for adults living with arthritis and rheumatic conditions. The conference is filled with both professional and volunteer-led sessions that touch on a variety of topics – from emotional challenges to sessions just for your loved ones. Since our first conference in 2007, hundreds of people have taken part in this special weekend.
Online Connection - Connect online with others for support and inspiration. Members can share stories and learn from the experiences of others with arthritis.
We have created a caring community of thousands of adults facing the challenges of arthritis and rheumatic diseases. Both people living with arthritis and their loved ones are welcome at our groups and events. For many, our groups and conferences have proven to be a life changing gift.
If you’re over 18 and you feel you can benefit from our programs, we welcome you to join our family!