Amyothophic Lateral Sclerosis Society of British Columbia

Donate Today
Ask Dr. Eisen
ALSBC Events
ALS Research

Message from the Executive Director

Printer-friendly version

The ALS Society of BC is dedicated to providing direct support to people living with ALS, along with their families and caregivers, to ensure the best quality of life possible while living with ALS. 

During 2017, nearly 500 families affected by ALS reached out to us for help.  This represents a 40% increase in just 10 years. Thankfully, this is the result of increased awareness. People are being diagnosed earlier in the disease therefor requiring services for a longer period of time, not an increase in cases of ALS. Thanks to the dedication of our volunteers – TEAM ALS BC & Yukon, and the support of our generous donors, no one had to wait to access a service provided by ALS BC..  Most requests for support were fulfilled within 2 business days.

In June, we received confirmation of a grant provided by the provincial government to conduct a research project. The CIRCA study (Characterizing the Impact of Respite Care in ALS) will evaluate the impact of providing a small amount of supplemental care on the well-being and health of persons with ALS and their caregivers by comparing to those who have not received supplemental care. Patient and primary caregiver pairs were selected. Of the pairs participating in the CIRCA study 60% were selected at random to receive additional care, with the remaining 40% acting as the control group. The control group did not receive additional care; however, their support is essential in conducting a robust scientific study, which will serve as the foundation for ALS BC to pursue additional funding, and strive to grow the program to offer the same support to other families in the future. Many thanks to the people who are participating in this study.  It is our hope to gather enough data to build a strong case for support for caregivers. 

Project MinE is a multi-national initiative with more than 15 participating countries. It will map the full DNA profiles of 15,000 people with ALS and 7,500 control subjects, establishing a global resource of human data that will enable scientists worldwide to understand the genetic signature that leads someone to develop ALS.  Funds raised from the WALKS for ALS support this research.  In BC, Dr. Ian Mackenzie at UBC is part of the research team.

Through assisting research, we are committed to find the cause of, and cure for ALS.  Until that day comes we will continue to work hard to support those living with ALS.

Wendy Toyer,
Executive Director, ALS Society of BC