The Season of Giving
For the second year in a row, the AST was recognized by Charity Navigator, America’s largest independent charity evaluator, with the highly coveted 4-star rating. This achievement represents the concerted effort of society members like you and the AST leadership to redefine the society as a world-class philanthropic organization. This designation assures donors that the Society is operating with the transparency, commitment to accountability, and fiscal responsibility that is required of top tier charitable organizations. It also reassures benefactors that their donation is used for the purpose it was intended.
The AST strives to be transparent both to its members and the public. The Society continues to expand its member resources while offering grants to researchers via a peer-review process.
This year, the AST launched several new initiatives across different areas of the organization. Some highlights from 2017 include:
- New Educational Resources: The AST launched the Comprehensive Trainee Curriculum (CTC) and the Transplant in 10 series. Additional new webinars and Journal Clubs are also continuously produced and recorded.
- New Member Resources: The AST added the journal Clinical Transplantation to its member resources this year.
- Patient Engagement: This year, the AST took its first major step to incorporate the patient perspective into the Society. Towards this end, we held our first Transplant Patient Summit in October.
- A New Community of Practice: The Organ Tissue and Preservation (OTPCOP) COP was established this year for AST members interested in cutting edge organ and tissue preservation research. In addition, an Advanced Practice Providers COP was approved and developed in 2017, with a launch planned for early 2018. Our diverse society now includes 15 different COPs representing every aspect of the field of transplantation.
- Research Grants: The AST awarded $460,000 in research grants in 2017. Additionally, the Society sponsored 11 pre-doctoral medical students for a research internship.
Did you know that member dues account for only 31% of the AST’s funding?
As you know, these initiatives are important to the mission of the AST but come at an expense. All of our members pay dues, and many may assume that the costs of these dues cover the expenses of these and other varied activities. However, membership dues account for just 31% of the AST’s funding.
While the AST receives funding from other sources, such as corporate sponsors, meetings, and donations, it is not enough to accomplish the key mission goals of the Society. Moreover, the expenses associated with new initiatives continue to increase. Thus, while the AST is a financially healthy organization, several sources of external revenue have remained flat while our expenses have increased. Therefore, now more than ever, the AST needs your donations to continue our mission. We very much appreciate that our membership dues are not a trivial expense and that so many of you already provide considerable time and effort to the AST. Knowing this, we are deeply grateful for your ongoing additional support of our Society.
The COP Donation Derby
The COP giving contest was updated this year to be more visually interesting and inclusive to COPs of all sizes.
The COP Donation Derby has been tracking the progress of COP giving on a weekly basis. There will be two winners this year who will each receive $1,000: the COP that raises the most money and the COP with the highest percentage of participating members.
In addition, each COP will receive 50 percent of the funds it raises to use toward their 2018 initiatives.
This is an exciting time to contribute to the AST. Not only are you supporting the program of your choice, but your donation also directly benefits your COP(s).
The Power2Save Fall Campaign
Through the Power2Save initiative, the AST is raising awareness by asking anyone connected to transplantation to create a short video at Tribute.co/Power2Save.
This campaign also has a fundraising aspect. The Society hopes to use it to raise funds for a research grant.
You, the members, make the AST what it is – a forward-thinking society that provides premier education to its members, research support especially for early investigators, advocacy for transplantation, and a new patient-facing platform. Thank you for all your generous contributions this year and your ongoing support of our Society.