The Neuromuscular Disease Foundation (NDF) is proud to offer a broad range of services, support programs and free resources to its global community of GNEM patients and families. These programs often facilitate patients and caregivers connecting with each other, and cultivating lifelong friendships.

On June 1st, we introduced two new programs to serve the global community of rare disease and GNEM patients and care partners / caregivers. The Monthly Patient Meditation Group offers multiple health and relaxation benefits for those living with a chronic condition or a rare disease. This monthly online meeting is to improve concentration, reduce the sense of anxiety, and create a greater sense of well-being.

The second new program is a monthly online support group available to family members and/or care partners, who support patients affected by a rare disease. Participants can share stories, ask questions, and get support from other participants. The two separate groups will operate during the same time windows, allowing for both patients and their caregivers to participate in their respective groups.

When introducing the monthly patient meditation group, Carol Gelbard, LCSW and NDF Emotional Wellness Director, quoted a Mayo Clinic study, saying “When you meditate, you may clear away the information overload that builds up every day and contributes to your stress”.

The emotional and physical benefits of meditation can include:

  • Gaining a new perspective on stressful situations
  • Building skills to manage your stress
  • Increasing self-awareness
  • Focusing on the present
  • Reducing negative emotions
  • Increasing imagination and creativity
  • Increasing patience and tolerance
  • Lowering resting heart rate
  • Lowering resting blood pressure
  • Improving sleep quality

Some research also suggests that meditation may help people manage symptoms of conditions such as:

  • Anxiety
  • Asthma
  • Cancer
  • Chronic pain
  • Depression
  • Heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Sleep problems
  • Tension headaches


Both new program offerings will launch this month, on June 16th, at 9 AM Pacific time. The monthly BETA Patient Support Group will be open to ALL rare disease patients. To register, please visit To make a donation in support of the Neuromuscular Disease Foundation’s ongoing program offerings and patient support services, head to

We hope to see you there!