Current NJ Metro Program & Service Announcements - National Multiple Sclerosis Society

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Current NJ Metro Program & Service Announcements


August 1, 2014

Recurring Event
Various dates and times

This information is updated the first week of every month

This page was last edited 9/10/14

Please read this message to learn about Wellness, FRIENDS, education and more!

Wellness Program

The New Jersey Metro Chapter offers gentle exercise programs in the fall & spring to promote health & wellness for people living with MS and a companion. Classes begin in September!  For a list of programs and locations visit You can also register by contacting Aubrey at the Chapter or call 1-800-FIGHT-MS (1-800-344-4867).

Programs in Spanish - Please share this with anyone you know who is affected by MS and also speaks Spanish!

Tomando Decisiones  sobre Estilos de Vida y Tratamientos: Pensando con Claridad acerca de los Beneficios y Riegos sábado, 6 de septiembre:

Making Treatment & Lifestyle Decisions: Thinking Clearly about Benefits and Risks:  An Educational Program for People Living with MS  Saturday, September 6:


Day for Hispanic Families Living with MS –What:  A Day to be informed about MS and to celebrate Hispanic culture

When:  Sunday, November 23, 2014, 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Where:  Columbia University-Casa Italiana Teatro,1161 Amsterdam Ave At 117th St, New York, NY

More information and registration:

More information about MS in Spanish can be found at:


Café con Leche

Café con Leche es un programa gratuito de la Sociedad ofreciendo un grupo de apoyo que se reúne mensualmente por teléfono bajo la dirección de un profesional para todos los hispanohablantes afectados por la esclerosis múltiple y que quieren comunicarse con otros. Para averiguar más o inscribirse, llame al 1-800-344-4867, opción 3.

Café con Leche is a Society program offering a free monthly professionally led telephone support group for anyone affected by MS who speaks Spanish and wants to connect with others. To learn more or to register, call 1-800-344-4867.

FRIENDS – that is what you get when you join a self-help group (SHG)!

F =  Fun to be had when you join the group.

R =  Research updates and study participation experiences to be shared among group members.

I =  Information to be discussed about a variety of topics.

E =  Education is important.

N =  Network to live your best life with MS.

D =  Dedicate your time to help people with MS.

S = Socialize, meet new people.

There are more than 30 SHGs in the 14 counties of the NJ Metro service area.  There may be one that is just right for you!  Learn about the different groups and see how you can contribute to the excitement of their meetings.  Your participation and voice is always welcome!

NEW groups are now forming at Overlook Hospital in Summit, at the library in Middletown and at the Holy Name Fitness Center in Oradell.

A group for veterans with MS meets at the VA in East Orange on the 4th Tuesday of every month. 

For more information contact Joyce Williams at 973--676-1000 x1729.

For more information about SHGs, contact Lisa at that Chapter at or at 732-508-4431.  You can also view the Chapter website page at:

Attention Veterans!

People who served in the armed forces may have special benefits that address their MS related needs.  For more information to see if you are eligible for specific veteran programs, contact Joyce Williams at 973-676-1000, ext. 1729

Join us for a FREE Informational Seminar – 2 dates – you choose your location!

What:  Current Treatment Options in MS

When and Where:

  • Mon, Oct 27, 6-8pm in the Woodbridge area (location to be announced soon) -presenters will be the clinical staff from the Robert Wood Johnson MS Center.
  • Thu, Nov 13, 6-8pm at the Barnabas MS Center in Livingston –presenter will be Krupa Pandey, MD from the Barnabas MS Center.

Registration Required:  call 1-800-344-4867 or email  Say that you want to register for the program, Current Treatment Options in MS (indicate which date/location).  If you want to register for the program in the Woodbridge area, please know that we will contact you as soon as the location is confirmed.

Planning for Caregivers

What:  A seminar about planning:  estate planning and administration; Medicaid planning and application; geriatric care management services

When:  Tuesday, September 16, 2014, 7:30pm

Where: Congregation Ahavath Torah, 240 Broad Ave, Englewood

More Information:  Devorah at 201-692-3972 or

Sponsored by:  Visiting Homemaker Home Health Aide Service of Bergen County

Tele-learning Series – Stay tuned for upcoming information about this unique educational program

What:  A series of teleconferences aimed at providing information and guidance on current matters essential to liv­ing one’s best life with MS featuring experts by phone with an online presentation and Q&A.

When:  The first call is scheduled for 2 different dates and times – you choose what works best for you!

Tips for people with MS and their partners: Planning for the future

Tuesday, November 18- 5 pm

Thursday, November 20- 7 pm 

Presented by Dick Bell of Financial Education Partners Foundation and Bradley Frigon of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, this session will provide helpful information – including legal and financial considerations – for carepartners and people living with MS.

Where:  from the comfort of your own home

Registration is required: call -1-800-344-4867 or email  You will get a call in number or web link upon registration.

More information about future calls will be available in the coming month.  Topics will include:

• Tips for Carepartners

• Research in MS

• Employment

• Managing MS Bowel and Bladder Symptoms

• Sex and Intimacy

• Gender Differences

• Preparing For MS Doctor Visits

Learn more about MS through this HealthTheater video featuring Konstantin Balashov, MD of Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson MS Center: (each video varies in time, from 2-5 minutes)

Do you have an employment question you would like answered? Are you curious about workplace disclosure, social security benefits, need a reasonable accommodation or are you thinking about returning to work?

If so, the National MS Society has a dedicated employment specialist to answer your questions.  Feel free to pose your questions directly to this email address:  You can expect to receive a response within 48 hours.

How to Choose the Wheeled Mobility Device that's Right for You

You can learn about how to choose a mobility device right from the comfort of your own home!  The videos are available on the National MS Society website (scroll to the bottom and both parts are there) and on YouTube.  They are equipped with closed captions. To activate the closed captions when playing the videos on YouTube, click on the CC button on the toolbar that appears below the video, and select on.

Are you looking for a low cost mobility device?  Then read the next paragraph to learn about the Chapter’s Client-to-Client Resources webpage…

Client to Client Resources 

View this webpage to learn about specific durable medical equipment that is available free or low cost:

Champions Against MS connects people living with MS and participants from Bike MS

Champions provide additional inspiration to those who have joined the movement. During Bike MS, event participants wear a bandana signed by a Champion living with MS with whom they have been matched. These personal connections foster education, awareness, gratitude and most importantly, hope. The paired Champion and Bike MS participant are also encouraged to connect before, during, and after the event.

Join Champions Against MS and be connected to the potential, the hope, and the momentum of this powerful movement. Contact Emily Borsetti at to become involved.  Read more about Bike MS from this link:

 Can Do Multiple Sclerosis Upcoming Webinars – FREE!

2nd Tuesday of each month 8:00p.m. – 9:15p.m. EST. Reserve your spot now!

Can Do MS’s monthly webinar series offers insight from MS experts representing different medical disciplines so that participants can gain additional knowledge relating to MS.  Participants interact with a team of Can Do MS Programs Consultants, by asking questions to learn how to actively co-manage their MS from the comfort of their home.  The next few webinars are listed below:

September 9, 2014: 8:00 – 9:15 p.m. Eastern Standard Time 

MS Symptoms Part II: Managing Mood and Cognition Issues
Presented by Can Do MS Programs Consultants:  Peggy Crawford, PhD & Jeff Hodgson, SLP
Many individuals living with MS will experience changes in their emotions and their cognitive functions over time.  Please join speech and language pathologist, Jeff Hodgson and psychologist, Peggy Crawford for a discussion about recognizing these changes, the relationship between mood and cognitive, and strategies for effective coping.  Read more

Webinar Series Archive

If you are not able to view Can Do MS webinars live, then please Can Do MS’s webinar

archives. Watch them on your own time. Visit

Are You Newly Diagnosed With MS? 

Click on the link below to view an archived webinar, Managing Multiple Sclerosis Early: Get Ahead of the Disease

New MS Strength and Balance Programs

CentraState Healthcare Foundation, along with the support of the Northfield Bank Foundation is offering two new MS Strength and Balance programs:

  • Tuesdays and Thursdays, 3-4:30pm at the RWJ Hamilton Center for Health and Wellness, 3100 Quakerbridge Road, Mercerville, NJ.  For more information contact Sharon LaForge at 609-584-7600.
  • Mondays, 4-5pm and Saturdays from 11:30am -12:30pm at the Princeton Fitness and Wellness Center, 1225 State Road, Princeton.  For more information contact Sharon Casper at 609-683-7888. 

Ramp Rebuild – help for people affected by Superstorm Sandy

What:  Funding is available through the NJ Division of Disability Services to replace, repair or build modular ramps for individuals who require one at their Sandy-impacted primary residences.  Ramps will be built for eligible applicants until funding is exhausted. Modular ramps are custom built from metal, wood or fiberglass and have no permanent footings, making them easy to install, remove, and relocate as necessary. Installation can take a few days or a week depending on the project.

More information: or call 1-888-285-3036

Caregiver Recognition in Bergen County

What:  Fiesta Time -  20th Annual Caregiver Event; enjoy complimentary chair massage, reflexology, door prizes, delicious cuisine and live music!

When:  Thursday, September 18, 3-7pm

Where:  Old Paramus Reformed Church, 660 East Glen Ave, Paramus

More information:  RSVP by September 8; call Fonda or Sabrina at 201-336-6503/6506

Carepartner Support Group

Connect with other carepartners, find support and share your experiences. This National MS Society support group is led by experienced volunteers who are here to help you navigate life as a carepartner of a person with MS.  To learn more, click on this link:  Carepartner Support Group

Free Educational Programs from Pharmaceutical Companies

The National MS Society, New Jersey Metro Chapter is making this information available to you about these educational opportunities.  The National MS Society, New Jersey Metro Chapter is not sponsoring these programs. The Society has had no role in developing the content of these programs:

What:  Living with MS: An informative event for people living with MS and their care partners

When:  Thursday, September 4th, 2014 at 6 pm

Where:  The Madison Hotel, 1 Convent Road, Morristown, NJ 07960 (dinner will be served)

Speaker:  Dr. Stuart Fox, The Neuroscience Center of Northern New Jersey, Morristown, NJ & a MS ambassador

RSVP:  1-866-703-6293 or

Sponsored by:  Genzyme


What:  MS Relapse Symptoms - Understanding Your Treatment Options

When:  Monday, September 22, 6:30 pm, meal will be served

Where:  Chengdu 46, 1105 US 46, Clifton

Speaker:  Dr. Maryann Picone

RSVP:  QP14-2333

Sponsored by: Questcor Pharmaceuticals, INC.


What:  Teleconference Series on different topics

When:  Sep 23 at 8pm; Sep 24 at 9pm

Where:  from the comfort of your own home

Speakers:  varied

More information:

Sponsored by:  Shared Solutions


What:  Living with MS: An informative event for people living with MS and their care partners

When:  Thursday, October 2nd, 2014 at 6 pm

Where:  Mohawk House, 3 Sparta Avenue, Sparta, NJ 07871 (dinner will be served)

Speaker:  Dr. Yevgeniy Khesin, Neurologic Associated Arts, Newton, NJ & a MS ambassador

RSVP:  1-866-703-6293 or

Sponsored by: Genzyme


What:  New Therapy Update for the Treatment of MS

When:  October 16th, 6-8pm; registration begins at 5:30pm; complimentary dinner will be served

Where:  The Madison Hotel, 1 Convent Road, Morristown, NJ., 07960

Speaker:  Mark Diamond, MD,  of The Neuroscience Center of Northern NJ

RSVP:  1-866-955-9999

Sponsored by:  Biogen Idec


             What:  Gilenya® Patient Programs:  Know Your Options:  A Closer Look at Gilenya® (fingolimod) and You

             When:  Tuesday evenings at 7:00 pm and Thursday evenings at 10:00 pm

             Where:  Speakers Direct on Line, Webinars

             Speaker(s): MD's, NP's and Patient Guides

             Sponsored by:  Novartis Pharmaceuticals

             More information:         

Keep S'myelin - a newsletter about MS just for kids!

Keep S’myelin is a colorful, engaging, informative, and reassuring newsletter to help children and their parents talk and learn about MS together. Each issue is filled with stories, interviews, games, and activities that highlight a specific topic related to MS, as well as a special section just for parents.  To receive this newsletter, contact Lisa at the Chapter at

Upcoming Research Symposium, taking place at two locations in NY

Saturday, September 13, 2014, Time: 12:30- 5:00 PM (NYC location)

New York City:  Annual Research Symposium 2014: Advancements in MS Treatments and Society Supported Research - NYC

Sunday, September 14, 2014, Time: 12:30- 5:00 PM (While Plains location)

Westchester County:  Annual Research Symposium 2014: Advancements in MS Treatments and Society Supported Research - SNY

Research Participation - This study is testing the safety and effectiveness of an investigational drug in reducing MS relapses, funded by Novartis.

If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS), you may be interested in a medical research study that is taking place at Rutgers-New Jersey Medical School (Newark).

To pre-qualify for this study, you must:

·        Be between the ages of 18 and 65

·        Have RRMS and 1 documented relapse during the previous year or 2 documented relapses during the previous 2 years

The study doctor will assess additional criteria during the screening period to determine whether this study is suitable for you. There is no expense to participate in this study. Eligible participants will receive study-related care and evaluations at no cost. Your participation is completely voluntary.

To find out more about this research study and learn if you pre-qualify to participate, call Deb Thurston at 973-972-2324.

Research Participation - The Marginalization, Mental Health, and Empowerment Team at Columbia University looking for individuals who would like to participate in a research study exploring the life experiences of individuals with MS.

This survey should only take about 15-20 minutes. Each participant will have a 1 in 10 chance to win a $10 Amazon Gift Card! If you are interested, feel free to enter the optional lottery by entering your email address at the end of the survey in the link provided.

After reading below, if you are eligible, please just click on the link below. Thank you in advance for your time and input and for sharing your story! We would really appreciate it if you could pass this message along to anyone else that you think may be eligible and willing to participate, it would be greatly appreciated.

Eligibility Criteria:
• Must be at least 18 years old
• Must be diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis
• Must live in the U.S.

If you meet the above criteria and are interested in participating, please click on the link below to begin the short survey.

***This study has been approved by the Teachers College, Columbia University Institutional Review Board: Protocol #14-227 If you have any complaints, questions, concerns, or would like to know the results, please feel free to contact us via e-mail at

Research Participation - Medication Beliefs in MS

Do you have relapsing-remitting MS?  Do you choose not to take medication to prevent flare-ups?  If so, researchers at the Kessler Foundation Research Center are looking for you! You are NOT required to take disease modifying treatments to be part of this study. Instead, we are interested to learn your reactions to telephone counseling you will receive.

It is hoped that this research will help us improve MS care and better understand reasons some patients with MS choose not to take medication.  All participants will undergo a baseline evaluation consisting of pencil-and-paper tests and questionnaires lasting approximately 1½ hours.  Following this, you will complete five 20 minute telephone conversations about MS medications. Finally, you will be asked to complete additional questionnaires at home at the completion of the study.  You will be compensated  $200 for your time. To be eligible, participants must: (1) be diagnosed with a relapsing form of MS; and (2) have discontinued taking a disease modifying medication. If you are interested in participating in this study and meet the above criteria, please contact Lauren Strober, Ph.D. at 973-324-8459 or OR Juliane Armstrong, B.S. at 973-324-8457 or

Research Participation - Help Define the Factors Associated with Employment and MS 

Researchers at the Kessler Foundation Research Center are interesting in learning more about the factors associated with maintaining employment in MS. Individuals who are gainfully employed and/or considering leaving the workforce or needing to cut back on hours are eligible to participate. All participants will complete an evaluation consisting of self-report questionnaires and two paper-and-pencil tasks. Questionnaires can be completed either in person or online. All participants will be compensated for their time. To be eligible, participants must be: (1) between the ages of 20 to 64; (2) diagnosed with definite MS; and (3) have no other neurological illness. If you are interested in participating in this study and meet the above criteria, please contact Lauren Strober, Ph.D. at 973-324-8459 or  You can read more about research at Kessler from this link:  

For more information about how you can participate in research studies, click on the National MS Society link:    

Come Ride, Volunteer or Inspire Others to Join in Bike MS!

The NJ Metro Chapter has 2 Bike MS events coming up in September.  Join us as a participant or ask others to ride on your behalf!   

Bike MS: Hops to Hops on Sunday, September 14th features a new location at Unionville Vineyards in Ringoes, NJ.  Ride beautiful 40 and 62 mile routes in the hills of Hunterdon County or join us at one of three exciting rest stops or the finish line for cheering!

Bike MS: Country Challenge (formerly the Great NJ Country Bike Ride) will be held on Saturday and Sunday, September 20th and 21st starting from Morristown. This event offers routes of 25, 50, 62 and the two-day 100 mile option throughout the hills of Morris and Somerset Counties.  This signature Bike MS event is a NJ Metro Chapter Classic!

Come be a part of Bike MS!!

Forks & Corks:  A White House Dinner

What:  Join us for an evening complete with champagne, wine, hors d’oeuvres, a gourmet three-course meal prepared by former White House Chefs Guy Mitchell and Woody Raber, and lots of laughs all while we cook our way toward a world free of MS.  Enjoy White House administration course favorites all while listening to the chefs reminisce about their time at the White House.  We will honor those living with MS as they serve as our dignitaries throughout the evening receiving a “ribbon of hope” and presidential treatment.

When:  Saturday, September 27th,

Where:  Forsgate Country Club, Monroe Township, NJ

Tickets:  $100/per person

For more information call or e-mail:  Karen Drzik:, 201-977-6054

We hope you will join us for a memorable evening!

Save the Date! NJ Metro Chapter’s first Climb to the Top; 33 floors and 822 steps closer to a cure! 

What:  Participants will climb 33 flights of stairs to the top of the Mack-Cali Harborside Plaza in Jersey City.

When:  Saturday, November 15, 2014; Check-in will start at 2pm with the first waive starting at 3pm

Where:  Mack-Cali Harborside Plaza 5,185 Hudson Street, Jersey City 07311

Registration Fee: $35; Fundraising Minimum: $250 

Don’t miss the After Party at Henry’s on the Hudson!  Enjoy the sunset and NYC skyline view

Complimentary hors d’oeuvres; Order dinner and drinks; Celebrate with others!

Registration and more information:

For more information please contact: Julie Falgiano 732.508.4432   

Fundraiser for the Kessler Foundation

What:  Stroll ’N Roll

When:  Sun, September, 21, 2014

Where:  Verona Park, Verona

More Information:

You can read our most current Chapter newsletter online from this link:

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