Arthritis Advocacy Summit Washington DC 2011

Thanks to Dr. John Klippel, President & CEO of the Arthritis Foundation, and Kathy Lubbers, my new friend and advocate, I was invited to speak to the national AF Board in DC. To be the voice of the millions of people who suffer from arthritis around the world was truly an honor. I spoke about the feeling of isolation and hopelessness that those suffering from chronic illness so often feel. People with arthritis are desperate to feel understood. I was deeply moved by the reaction of the Board members to my words. They gave me a standing ovation and spoke to me intently afterwards about how they could help people with arthritis to make the connections that they need to with each other. What was so heartwarming and momentous about this occasion for me was that the AF Board members truly listened to my message. They want to help and they want to make a difference in our lives. Most Board members had traveled for miles to be in Washington DC. They had left their families alone just to advocate for us! I was so proud last night.

Dr. Klippel tweeted: “Inspired by Karen Ager’s comments to the Board which touched my heart. If you care about arthritis, please read her book Enemy Within.”
My sincere gratitude to the AF for all that they do to help people with arthritis globally.