COMMUNICATION – Words Matter

If you attended one of the foundation’s past events, you may remember there was a fair amount of talking taking place: about art, our story, caregivers and palliative care. But over the past year, with everything that has been going on, you are forgiven if you’re a little fuzzy on some of the language and concepts we shared last September.

Fear not! We are here, before the virtual event, with some word prep: Reintroducing you to some of the main terms and core ideas that are part of the vocabulary we use when talking about the StewARTworks Foundation. And don’t worry – no pop quiz at the end!

Mission Statement

The declaration of a nonprofit organization’s core purpose and what it values most.

The mission of the StewARTworks Foundation is to provide family caregivers of palliative care patients being treated for pain with the support, information, resources and advocacy needed to best care for themselves, their loved ones and their families.

There are an estimated 53 million caregivers in the United States right now. The foundation has narrowed our focus on caregivers of pain patients in palliative care not only because it was our personal experience, but also because of the realization that this particular group seems to get lost in the larger discussion of caregiving.

Family Caregiver

A family member or friend (we like to say, chosen family) who provides uncompensated home care to an individual with a serious illness or disability, involving significant time and effort.

Every single person, at some point in their lives, will be touched by caregiving, as either the recipient of care or the giver of care. It’s a tough job and the foundation strives to provide as much information and resources as we can to help make that job easier.

Palliative Care

Specialized medical care for people living with a serious illness, focusing on providing patients with relief from the symptoms and stress of the illness. The goal is to improve quality of life for both the patient and family. Palliative care is provided by a specially-trained team of doctors, nurses and other specialists who work together with a patient’s other doctors to provide an extra layer of support. Palliative care is based on the needs of the patient, not on the prognosis. It is appropriate at any age and at any stage in a serious illness, and it can be provided along with curative treatment. Definition from the Center to Advance Palliative Care (CAPC)

The foundation believes palliative care should be the standard of all care, treating the entire family as a whole when a life-altering diagnosis is given. Stewart’s time in palliative care helped to relieve his severe neuropathic pain which provided him with an additional year of time with his family, his friends and his painting.

Friendraiser

A term we adopted meaning a social event held for the purpose of raising awareness and support for a specific cause or interest.

The foundation’s gallery events showcase Stewart’s artwork. We use his original paintings to draw (pun intended!) people in so that they can learn more about caregivers and be introduced to palliative care. All while enjoying Stewart’s joyous art.

Giclee

This type of fine art digital printing process, combines pigment-based inks with high quality archival paper or canvas.

These prints are the core of the foundation’s unique fundraising model – the gallery events. All the proceeds from the sale of these museum quality reproductions go to fund the foundation’s mission, caregiver initiatives and partner projects.

Partnership / Sponsorship

A partnership is an arrangement between organizations who agree to cooperate to advance and support their mutual interests; increasing the likelihood of each achieving their mission and reaching new supporters.

The foundation embraces other nonprofits supporting caregivers and palliative care as part of our community. We may be different in the particulars but we are the same in the essentials.

A sponsor underwrites a project or activity in partnership with another person or organization.

This is one of the main ways we cooperate and collaborate with other nonprofits, such as:

  • Triage Cancer on the development and implementation of a caregiving resource page on their website, along with a quick guide to caregiving and an animated short film on the importance of supporting caregivers.
  • The Midwest Lung Cancer Summit, in Minneapolis, MN, presented by A Breath of Hope Lung Foundation, where we focus on providing national and local information to the cancer caregivers in attendance.

So, I hope this little vocabulary lesson has refreshed your understanding of and helped you connect-the-dots of why the foundation came to be, what our core values are and how we strive to achieve our goals.