The mission of the New Brunswick Lung Association is to "improve respiratory health." When we formed in 1933, our main challenge was combating tuberculosis. Over time, our work expanded to cover a range of lung health issues such as asthma and tobacco. Today, your New Brunswick Lung Association undertakes programs, education, and advocacy in the areas of lung disease, air quality, and climate change in areas where they negatively affect respiratory health. The funds raised in the 2016 Bike for Breath will go toward supporting our mission and work. Some of the programs that will benefit from Bike for Breath are: our annual Asthma Camp for Children, our Lung Transplant Support Program, and our national lung health research programs.
For over thirty years, children and families who live with asthma have had a place to get answers to many questions they may have - at Camp AsthmaTOPIA. The children who attend this free camp gain independence from parents and primary care-givers and experience responsibility for their own well being for the first time. Participants get to socialize with other children from around the province and share their asthma experiences, letting them know they’re not alone. Daily fun-filled asthma education sessions with a Registered Nurse and Respiratory Therapist teach the campers about how their lungs work, asthma medications, correct techniques for taking medications, avoiding asthma triggers, and self-managing asthma through an action plan. The children are taught to control their asthma and not let asthma control their lives. In addition to learning about their disease, campers also participate in regular camp activities such as swimming, canoeing, archery, and crafts – in a safe environment for asthmatics.
Lung Transplant Support Program:
At any given time there are approximately 10 to 15 New Brunswickers awaiting lung transplants. Since lung transplants are only done in Toronto, Montreal, Winnipeg, Edmonton or Vancouver, our New Brunswick patients must move to live within two hours of the transplant hospital. Patients can wait many weeks, months or even years. The financial assistance provided to these patients is somewhat limited, creating a heavy financial burden for the patients, their family and friends during the whole process of waiting for a transplant, receiving a new set of lungs and all the post-operative treatments. Through our Lung Transplant Support Program, we provide a modest financial stipend to patients, advocate for assistance for them and their families, and facilitate a moderated support group for patients to share and support each other in their transplant journey. Remember,
When you can't breathe, nothing else matters.