ALBUQUERQUE — The International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) has collected critical funds in the community since 1954 – one dollar at a time – as part of the Fill the Boot program for the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA). The Albuquerque Area Fire Fighters Association IAFF Local 244 will continue this long-standing tradition as its members kick off the annual program raising funds to support MDA’s vision to accelerate research, advance care, and advocate for the support of MDA families.
Dedicated fire fighters will be at numerous storefronts across the city with boots in hand asking pedestrians, customers, and other passersby to donate to MDA from September 1 – 7 at various times throughout the day, at participating storefronts. These storefronts include Walmart, Smiths, Walgreens, John Brooks and Silver Street Market.
The partnership between MDA and IAFF began in 1954 when the IAFF signed a proclamation designating MDA its charity of choice and vowing to continue raising awareness and funds until cures are found. To date, the nearly seven-decade partnership has raised more than $679 million with involvement from over 300,000 fire fighters nationwide. These funds have led in part to over a dozen FDA-approved drugs in as many years for those with neuromuscular disease. Those treatments were created from MDA’s vision to open a new field of medicine and push the boundaries of the medical frontier we call genetic medicine.
“What the IAFF has done for MDA over the past 68 years is unprecedented,” said Donald S. Wood, Ph.D., President and CEO of MDA. “With the support from our partners at the IAFF, MDA is doing the impossible in accelerating research, advancing care, and advocating for people living with neuromuscular disease. We have a mission to empower the people we serve to life longer, more independent lives and we will fulfill this mission together, with the IAFF.”