Frequently Asked Questions

How many people are impacted by chronic pain diseases?

Reports by the U.S. Institute of Medicine and the Department of Defense show that more than 100 million American men, women, and children are impacted by chronic pain. That’s 1 in 3 U.S. adults, 50% of all veterans, and 80% of veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.

What is fibromyalgia?

Fibromyalgia (FM) is a life-altering, chronic pain disease affecting 2-4% of women, men and children of all backgrounds worldwide to suffer.  (That’s 10 million Americans alone.)  The disease can strike suddenly or occur as a gradual increase in symptoms, indicating changes in the central nervous system (neuroplasticity).  Sensory information (such as light, sound, and touch) becomes amplified by the CNS, causing the brain to respond with increasing pain and symptoms.  FM severity waxes and wanes; often increases over time; and may become disabling.

Why Together Walks?

The mission of the walks is to increase FM awareness, education, resources, and support for research in the general public, medical communities, legislators, and people affected by FM.

Together Walks are action-oriented, fun, and healthy community events. As the FM community’s largest global events, Together Walks unite the public, patients, and their friends, families, associates and neighbors to end the suffering of FM.

Whether live or virtual, Together Walks support people impacted by FM and chronic pain diseases and their loved ones. Fundraising and friendraising bring people together to make a difference.

What impact can YOU make through Together Walks?

  • Raise FM awareness by educating local communities and political leaders about this condition
  • Alleviate stigmatization of people suffering with FM and chronic pain diseases
  • Create more pilot research funding, especially in the field of effective integrative treatments and new exploration in areas such as small fiber neuropathy, cervical cord compression, and myofascial release which promises new treatments
  • Increase support by providing local, accessible resources and information for daily living to patients
  • Promote awareness of the ramifications, including financial consequences, of chronic pain to the public, legislators, medical community and government agencies

How are the proceeds used?

Research/innovation seed funding raised at Together Walks supports new exploration in areas such as small fiber neuropathy, cervical cord compression, and myofascial release which may bring promising new integrative pain treatments.

The Center for Understanding, Research and Education of Fibromyalgia (CURE FM), the research arm of the National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association, will sponsor pilot research for innovative explorations that can lead to major NIH or federally funded project research of FM.

How do I fundraise?

When you joined or started a team on Crowdrise, you created a personal fundraising. When you share your link with your potential donors, they have the option to “Register” for or “Donate” to your team. The funds raised show up under your team total.

The changes that you’re making for people helps keep a focus on the importance of choice, community integration, and self-directed services and support in the lives of people with life-altering fibromyalgia and chronic pain diseases and their families.  The money you raise supports new exploration in areas such as small fiber neuropathy, cervical cord compression, and myofascial release which may bring promising new integrative pain treatments. We hope you will reach and exceed your team fundraising goals, so we’ve created a few resources to help you:

We are happy to give a thank-you for all you are doing to make a difference for millions affected by chronic pain diseases, so we’re offering a few gifts as incentives:

Gifts will be distributed following the completion of the Together Walks.

What is “Friendraising,” and how do I do it?

Together Walks are an opportunity to bring the chronic pain and FM communities together in FRIENDraising. Connect at live events or online on social media channels. By holding a “virtual” event, you can meet other people in your area experiencing the same thing as you or who are supportive of your cause.

What is the National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association?

Mission Statement: The National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association unites patients, policy makers, and healthcare, medical and scientific communities to transform lives through visionary support, advocacy, research and education of fibromyalgia and chronic pain illnesses.

Vision Statement: End chronic pain conditions from derailing lives by promoting early diagnosis, driving scientific research for a cure, and facilitating translational research for the THREE A’s of Treatment for fibromyalgia and chronic pain:  Appropriate, Accessible, and Affordable.

The National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association is a nonprofit, tax-exempt charitable organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Donations are tax-deductible as allowed by law.

What is a virtual Together Walk?

We’ve organized a virtual Together Walk so you can form fundraising and friendraising teams online, even while you are at home. Everyone can participate regardless of health status or ability to travel to specific locations. You can participate in the Together Walks by donating, fundraising, or walking locally. The changes that you make for people impacted by life-altering, chronic pain diseases is amazing and appreciated.  Together we make a difference and make fibromyalgia visible.

How can I participate in the Virtual Together Walk?

A virtual walk raises awareness of chronic pain diseases and funds for research. It is created online and can have a live event in the community. Both use the Crowdrise registration process. For instructions on how to register, please click here. For NFMCPA recommendations for a successful community event, use the step-by-step guides below.

Online

  1. Join the Virtual Together Walk and set a team fundraising goal. Form a team of your friends, neighbors, support group members, and family. Or choose to participate on your own, knowing you are part of something bigger! Raise funds for research. For ideas, check out the fundraising toolkit.
  2. Order the official Together Walk t-shirt to raise awareness everywhere you go! You make a difference.

Live in your community

  1. Join the Virtual Together Walk and set a team fundraising goal. Form a team of your friends, neighbors, support group members, and family. Or choose to participate on your own, knowing you are part of something bigger! For ideas, check out the fundraising toolkit.
  2. Pick a location and date to host your local walk. Rolling, strolling, walking, or running is best scheduled during the month of May in celebration of May 12 Fibromyalgia Awareness Day. Choose your distance: you may walk around the block, do a 1K walk at the local mall, or even try a longer walk or run around your neighborhood. Do what you can. There is no distance too short. Post a team update on Crowdrise with the details! Want an example? See Terry McSweeney’s 2016 Virtual Team – Fibromyalgia Pathways.
  3. Order the official Together Walk t-shirt, and create team signs to raise awareness during your local walk.
  4. Take a photo of you or your team and share it on social media or email it to us at info@togetherwalks.org. We invite you to use #TogetherWalks and #IWalkForFibro. Tag us @togetherwalks on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook.  We invite you to share anyway or anywhere!