NAF is a membership supported, nonprofit organization established in1957 to help persons with ataxia and their families. The Foundation's primary purpose is to support promising ataxia research and to provide vital programs and services for ataxia families.
In 1978 the Foundation first began direct funding of ataxia research through the NAF Research "Seed-Money" Program. Since that time, the Foundation has established additional research programs which have included programs such as the NAF Young Investigator Award, the NAF Fellowship Award and other research initiatives.
NAF research programs continue to fund promising ataxia research studies throughout the world. The Foundation supports research in dominant ataxia (including SCAs), recessive ataxia (including Friedreich's) and sporadic ataxia.
The Foundation has developed an extensive library of NAF brochures, fact sheets, books, and videos on ataxia. Also available to its members is the Foundation's quarterly news publication, "Generations". This 48 page ataxia news magazine provides the latest information on ataxia research, articles on living with ataxia, personal accounts from ataxia families throughout the United States, and much more.
The Foundation offers a Resource List of neurologists in your area and provides Bulletin Boards, Chat Rooms, NAF Pen Pal Programs, and other venues for ataxia families to connect with one another. One additional way the Foundation offers ataxia families to connect is through the annual membership meetings. Held in a different geographical location each year, these three day conferences give a comprehensive look at ataxia through experts in the field of ataxia research, genetics, physical therapy, living with ataxia, coping, financial planning, caregiving, and alike.
The Foundation attends and participates at a number of medical conferences and Ability Expos throughout the year. In addition, the Foundation sponsors various research symposiums including the NAF Ataxia Investigators Meetings (AIM). On a local level, the Foundation continues to establish NAF Chapters, NAF Support Groups, and NAF Ambassadors throughout the United States, Canada and abroad.