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The Migraine Research Foundation was started to help the millions of people who suffer from migraine pain as well as for the friends and family who support them.  Here at MRF, we are lucky to have incredible volunteers who are helping us raise money for important research into the causes and treatment of migraine.  Our volunteers’ lives have all been touched by migraine, and they are fiercely committed to helping fund its causes and treatment because they understand that research holds the key to progress against this scourge. These volunteers deserve special thanks for donating their time and energy in helping MRF raise money for research. Please check back periodically for new volunteer spotlights. And let us know what you or someone you know is doing to help so that we can spotlight them.

 Sam and Charlie
Two young boys from Minnesota proved that helping a loved one can be fun and games. Sam and Charlie, ages 12 and 10, decided to donate the proceeds of their annual backyard carnival to the Migraine Research Foundation in honor of their grandmother, a longtime migraine sufferer. Their hard work was rewarded with a successful carnival that raised over $800 and much-needed awareness for migraine research.
Inspired by the Muscular Dystrophy carnivals of her youth, Sam and Charlie’s mother helped her boys organize their first backyard carnival in 2003 to benefit a local charity. The carnival has since grown into an annual event much anticipated by the family and their friends, with the proceeds going to a cause near and dear to their hearts. This year, the boys decided to donate to the Migraine Research Foundation as a way to support their grandmother and teach others that migraine is a common and debilitating condition.

Making the carnival a success required a lot of hard work from Sam and Charlie. With some help from their parents, they made booths for games and food, drawing on ideas from the internet and those they had seen at the state fair. Invitations to the carnival were sent to family and friends – who each year look forward to having a great time while supporting a worthy cause. Local companies also donated food and prizes for the carnival. Sam, Charlie and other family members manned the booths. Favorite games at this year’s carnival included marshmallow mini-golf, a tennis ball toss and a minnow race – featuring live minnows!

Sam and Charlie want people to know that with dedication and a lot of hard work, it is not difficult to find a fun way to help others and raise awareness for important causes. After the carnival was over, they both took great satisfaction in counting the money they raised, knowing it would help people like their grandmother. They also feel good about teaching others how common migraine is and how so few resources are devoted to finding help for sufferers.

MRF is sharing Sam and Charlie’s story to thank the boys for their generosity and to show that anybody, regardless of their age, can find a creative way to support migraine research and really make a difference.

  Renee Daley
Many sufferers feel helpless in the face of the debilitating effects of migraine and wonder what they can do to speed up progress in treating this illness that affects so many Americans. Renee Daley is one migraineur who decided that she no longer wanted to suffer in silence and is an inspiring example of what one person – armed with passion and conviction – can do.
Renee’s chronic daily migraine had seriously interfered with her life, forcing her to quit her job as an accountant at a law firm and impeding her ability to exercise, make plans or do the things that come easily to most people.  Frustrated by the seeming lack of independent research into the causes of migraine, Renee wanted to start her own foundation for migraine research.  In looking into her idea, Renee came across the Migraine Research Foundation and immediately offered her services.  She understood that becoming actively involved in MRF’s mission was the quickest way to our shared goal of advancing migraine research.

Renee had already started a support group for migraine sufferers at her church. Empowered with a renewed sense of purpose, she got permission to place a collection box there so that people could contribute to MRF.  With materials supplied by MRF, Renee and her group sent out information on the need for migraine research to people in their personal and professional networks to encourage additional donations.  For her 30th birthday, Renee asked friends and family to make donations for migraine research instead of giving her birthday gifts.

At MRF’s request, Renee has put her know-how on paper.  She has written a pamphlet for others who want to start migraine support groups in their communities. (Click here to download the pamphlet “How to Start a Support Group.”) She also wants to write a book about her migraine struggles and donate the proceeds to MRF.  To date, Renee has raised over $1,200 for migraine research.

We’re spotlighting Renee for her efforts and thanking her for her support. Suffering from migraine can be debilitating – but by working together, we can make a difference.