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About The Arthritis Society

The Arthritis Society is a national health charity, fueled by donors and volunteers, with a vision to live in a world where people can be free from the devastating effects that arthritis can have on lives.

The Arthritis Society began nearly 70 years ago with one very clear goal; to alleviate the suffering of people crippled by arthritis. Founded in 1948 by Dr. Wallace Graham and his medical peers from across the country, it was Mary Pack, a fiercely driven community advocate who worked tirelessly to put peoples’ needs truly into the spotlight. Today we bring that passion to communities across Canada.

We are proud to have the trust and support of donors and sponsors who provide the funding capacity to invest in cutting-edge research, proactive advocacy and innovative solutions that will deliver better health outcomes and an improved quality of life for people affected by arthritis. That support has resulted in broad educational outreach to people living with arthritis and over $200M invested, the largest source of charitable arthritis research funding.

We benefit from the advice of subject matter experts on our National Board, our Division Advisory Boards and Medical, Scientific and Patient-centric committees along with countless committed volunteers.

Our Accomplishments are ongoing

Through the generosity of our supporters, the Arthritis Society has:

  • Proudly led to the establishment of the practice of rheumatology by making sure all teaching hospitals were funded to provide the specialty practice to physicians in the 1940/50’s
  • Founded and financially support expert care Arthritis Centres in hospitals across Canada
  • Provided advanced on-site physio and occupational care for arthritis patients through Ontario Government funding
  • Established a strong network, facilitating advocacy at the Federal and Provincial level. For example, we were a champion for the life-altering introduction of Biologics in the late ‘80’s, and most recently, the need for research and adequate legislation including access to treatment for Medical Marijuana as a viable pain solution
  • Helped to fund professional development programs for primary care clinicians including physiotherapists, occupational therapists and nurses.”
  • Supported a proactive focus for facilitating self-management of the disease, with advanced online learning modules, webinars and in-person learning forums and national conferences
  • Established Family Days and Children’s camps in nearly every province, giving children who have arthritis and their parents, a sense of community, as well as a backpack program to help school-aged children adjust to their challenges
  • Run a highly-regarded successful annual Walk which raises awareness and engages more than 40 communities in supporting those living with arthritis

Why what we do matters

Arthritis is Canada’s most pervasive chronic health condition, for which there is no cure.

More than 6 Million Canadians have arthritis – that is 1 in 5 Canadian adults. There is simply more work that needs to be done. Without serious attention to this disease and its ramifications, there will be a 50% increase in the number of people affected by arthritis, increasing to 1 in 4 Canadians within 20 years.

With the generous support of donors, sponsors and volunteers, we will achieve our vision to live in a world where people can be free from the devastating effects that arthritis has on lives.

Vision

To live in a world where people can be free from the devastating effects that arthritis can have on lives.

Mission

To invest in cutting-edge research, proactive advocacy and innovative solutions that will deliver better health outcomes and an improved quality of life for people affected by arthritis.

For more information, visit our Mission page.

To find out how you can help bring our mission to life, visit our Get Involved section

Purpose

To embrace and empower the resilient spirit of people who live with arthritis, as we tirelessly pursue a future without it.

Values

  • We share a passionate commitment to our mission
  • We fiercely seek the bold, the innovative and the truth
  • We exemplify courageous leadership and spirited teamwork