Monday Dec 17, 2012

Your Support Helps AAFP Foundation Make a Difference

You might know that the AAFP Foundation -- the Academy's philanthropic arm -- provides domestic and international disaster relief, helps establish free clinics through Family Medicine Cares USA and helps address the health care needs of the underserved people of Haiti through Family Medicine Cares International.

But did you know that our Foundation also contributes more than $500,000 a year to Academy initiatives and programs, such as Americans in Motion-Healthy Interventions (AIM-HI), Family Medicine Interest Groups (FMIGs), the Robert Graham Center, familydoctor.org and Tar Wars?

In fact, the Foundation provided more than $100,000 for the National Conference of Family Medicine Residents and Medical Students this year. It awarded scholarships to help 169 students and residents attend the event this summer in Kansas City, Mo. Those numbers are set to increase to 200 students and residents and a $120,000 contribution in 2013.

In addition, the Foundation has committed to contribute nearly $600,000 to Academy programs next year.

Through the Family Medicine Philanthropic Consortiumthe Foundation has awarded nearly $700,000 to AAFP constituent chapters since its inception in 2006, funding 162 student and resident initiatives and outreach programs in 35 states. This year alone, the Foundation funded 29 programs in 18 states for a total of $104,000.

These contributions are possible because of your generous support. Individual donations accounted for more than 10 percent of the Foundation's revenue and support in 2011. Dues check-off donations are the largest single source of member contributions to the Foundation each year and accounted for nearly $300,000 in 2011.

The final quarter of the year typically marks the busiest time of the year for donations as we pay our dues. Unfortunately, such donations fell 60 percent, year over year, in November. The amount of money donated in October and November combined was more than $50,000 less than during the same time last year.

The AAFP Foundation is one of the primary philanthropic organizations my wife and I support. I had the opportunity to serve as a member of the Foundation board for two years and observed directly the organization's compassion, dedication and hard work. Please consider the Foundation in your charitable giving. It deserves -- and needs -- our support.

It's not too late to make a tax-deductible contribution and support these worthy programs in the coming year.

Glen Stream, M.D., M.B.I., is the Board Chair of the AAFP.

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