About Us

MDA is leading the fight to free individuals — and the families who love them — from the harm of muscular dystrophy, ALS and related muscle-debilitating diseases that take away physical strength, independence and life. We use our collective strength to help kids and adults live longer and grow stronger by finding research breakthroughs across diseases, caring for individuals from day one and empowering families with services and support in hometowns across America.

For Families, By Families

MDA's legacy of progress has always started with families at the heart of all we do. For more than 65 years, we have been committed to saving and improving the lives of kids and adults living with muscular dystrophy and related life-threatening diseases. We are proud of our rich history and grateful to the dedicated families and supporters who have made today's progress possible. The victories of our past will lead to tomorrow's treatments and cures.

How MDA Started

In June 1950, Paul Cohen, a prominent New York business leader living with muscular dystrophy, invited a group of individuals to meet in his Rye, New York, office. Each had a personal connection to muscular dystrophy, and the gathering focused on the urgent need to raise funds to advance research seeking treatments and cures for muscular dystrophy. The group — so vested in the fight against neuromuscular diseases — formed the organization that became the Muscular Dystrophy Association. That year, MDA’s first research grant for $1,500 was awarded to neuromuscular disease pioneer Ade. T. Milhorat, M.D.

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If you’re seeking to start or advance your career with a purpose, MDA is an employer that will enable you to #LiveUnlimited. MDA (Muscular Dystrophy Association) is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the lives of children and adults with muscular dystrophy, ALS and related diseases that weaken muscle strength and mobility. Join us on this journey that defies daily limitations and enables the MDA families we serve to live life to the fullest. How do you #LiveUnlimited? Apply now.

MDA is committed to recruiting, hiring and promoting people with disabilities and veterans. If you need an accommodation to assist with completing the electronic application, please email your request to recruiting@mdausa.org.


Hugo, Resource Specialist
“One of the things that I love about MDA is that the organization is constantly growing. It’s constantly changing and listening to the needs of patients.”

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Become A Volunteer

Volunteers are the driving force that enables MDA to support families in hometowns across America. Our volunteers are the heart of MDA's programs, making experiences like Summer Camp, support groups, seminars, special events and many other initiatives possible for families who are counting on us.

Here are just a few ways you can make a difference.

  • Office Volunteer: You’ll assist on various projects including making phone calls, data entry, auction procurement, supply assistance and more. 4-hour shifts between 9:00 am and 5:00 pm are encouraged, but can be flexible based on your schedule and business needs. Specialized HIPAA training required and provided, must be at least 18 years old.

  • Event Volunteers: Help us to make MDA special events a success. You can work on events like Muscle Walk, Lock-Up, Galas, and Golf tournaments. Time commitment varies depending on event and time of year.

  • Community Outreach Volunteer: Share MDA in your community through MDA Summer Camp Recruitment presentations, reaching out to and visiting retail partners and fire departments who fundraise for MDA, supporting health and job fairs, and other opportunities. Time commitment varies throughout the year.

  • Summer Camp Volunteer: Apply to spend a life-changing week at MDA Summer Camp. Volunteer counselors must be at least 16 years old (18 at some camps) and will provide campers with around-the-clock care and companionship. Counselors push wheelchairs, meet the daily needs of each child and become a youngster’s friend for a week. Volunteer selection is based on a completed camp application, clear criminal background check, three references and an interview with MDA staff. Training required and provided.

Click here to sign up!

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Diversity & Inclusion

MDA understands the importance of having a diverse workplace. Different backgrounds and characteristics, such as race, ethnicity, gender, disability, culture and sexual orientation bring innovative viewpoints and skills to a company.

Integrating diversity and inclusion initiatives across the Company is essential to our business strategy and long-term success. Therefore, the Company has established resources and measurable diversity objectives which focus on:

  • Expanding and embracing diversity across our Company
  • Strengthening our partnerships with diverse national and local community organizations

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Our Impact

Families are at the heart of MDA's mission. We wake up every morning to create more hope and answers for families living with muscular dystrophy and related diseases that take away physical strength and mobility. We do this by finding research breakthroughs across diseases, caring for kids and adults from day one and empowering families with services and support in hometowns across America.

MDA is using the money we raise to accomplish the following goals by 2020:

  • CURE: Double our research investment on drug development and clinical trials to bring more treatments and cures to families.
  • CARE: Provide care and support for 50,000 more families — a 50 percent increase over the number of families registered with MDA today.
  • CHAMPION: Fund 20,000 kids at MDA Summer Camp at no cost to families as we expand our offerings for young adults.

Here are the ways we’re helping achieve these goals so families can live longer and grow stronger:

Cure: Finding research breakthroughs across diseases to accelerate treatments and cures.

At MDA, we take a big-picture perspective across the full spectrum of neuromuscular diseases to uncover breakthroughs that accelerate treatments and cures. The power in our research approach is that we can often apply learnings from one disease to achieve progress in others to bring urgently needed answers to our families.

  • MDA is currently funding about 200 research projects in 12 countries.
  • In 2015, MDA awarded 84 research grants with a total funding commitment of more than $21.5 million.
  • Every day, MDA invests $75,000 in research to find breakthrough treatments and cures across diseases.
  • This year, dozens of clinical trials are in progress thanks in part to MDA’s long-term research investments.

Care: Caring for kids and adults from day one.

We know that early diagnosis, highly specialized care and access to promising clinical trials help ensure the best possible outcomes for individuals and families facing muscular dystrophy, ALS and related life-threatening diseases. That’s why MDA is here to provide care for kids and adults from day one. Our MDA Care Centers offer families best-in-class, comprehensive care from a wide variety of health care specialists at one location on the same day, while our trained information specialists and educational resources are available to offer guidance and support through every step of the journey.

  • MDA has more than 150 Care Centers across the United States and in Puerto Rico located at top hospitals and health care facilities.
  • There were nearly 50,000 visits to our MDA Care Centers in 2015.
  • MDA brings together nearly 450 neuromuscular disease clinicians and experts every other year at our annual Clinical Conference to drive the best outcomes and care for families today.

Champion: Empowering families with services and support in hometowns across America.

MDA is here for our families in hometowns across America to empower the kids and adults we serve. From offering support groups and educational seminars that help caregivers, parents and individuals through their journey — to assisting families with durable medical equipment to maintain independence — to giving kids with muscular dystrophy the best week of the year at MDA Summer Camp, MDA is here to help families maintain and improve their health while actively pursuing education, passions, careers, dating, marriage and other goals associated with living independently.

  • More than 3,800 kids received the best week of the year at no charge to their families at MDA Summer Camp in 2015. MDA hosts nearly 75 summer camps across the country annually.
  • Every month, about 300,000 unique visitors come to mda.org to find the information and resources they need — that’s about 3.6 million people a year.
  • MDA provided more than 140 support groups, including 1,200 different sessions, in hometowns across America during 2015.

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