Updated: Oct 5
After 11 years of relentless dedication to finding a cure for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD), Harrison’s Fund (HF) is embarking on an exciting new journey. HF has not only evolved its visual identity but has also expanded its mission to address a pressing and often overlooked need in the Duchenne community: mental health support for affected families.
A Fresh New Look: Maturing with Purpose
Harrison's Fund, founded in 2012 by Alex and Donna Smith in honor of their son Harrison, has always been synonymous with hope, courage, and unwavering determination. Over the past decade, the organization has made significant strides in raising awareness and funds for Duchenne research. However, it was time for a transformation that reflects the maturity and steadfast commitment that has grown within the organisation.
The new brand identity, unveiled here today, is a visual representation of this evolution. The logo, once vibrant and youthful, has been refined to convey a more mature and sophisticated image. It reflects Harrison's Fund's transition from its early years of grassroots activism to a seasoned and formidable advocate for change.
A New Primary Direction: Filling the Unmet Need in Mental Health
While Harrison’s Fund has always been driven by the mission to find a cure for Duchenne, the organisation has recognised a critical unmet need within the Duchenne community: the mental health and emotional well-being of families affected by this devastating disease. As children with Duchenne face numerous physical challenges, their families also endure an immense emotional toll.
The launch of this new brand marks a pivotal moment as Harrison’s Fund expands its focus beyond medical research. It now endeavors to provide comprehensive support to families who navigate the unique challenges of caring for a child with Duchenne. This includes addressing the mental health issues that often arise, such as anxiety, depression, and the emotional strain that accompanies a rare and progressive disease.
The Urgent Need for Mental Health Support
The decision to address mental health within the Duchenne community is driven by a stark reality: families often feel isolated and overwhelmed. The emotional burden of witnessing a child's decline and managing the complexities of healthcare can lead to a profound sense of despair.
By taking on this challenge, Harrison’s Fund aims to foster a sense of community and understanding among families facing similar struggles. The organisation plans to principally offer Chrysalis Grants to support private psychology sessions and support groups. Our pilot study feedback indicated that the priority for funding should be with newly diagnosed parents and those facing bereavement and end of life. Chrysalis will start there and will expand as funding and scope allow and our provision grows. Tailored to the emotional needs of families. This holistic approach recognizes that improving the quality of life for children with Duchenne extends beyond the laboratory and into the hearts and minds of those who care for them.
Harrison’s Fund's new brand launch signifies not just a visual makeover but a profound shift in purpose. While the commitment to finding a cure for DMD remains unwavering, the organisation is now embracing the broader mission of addressing the mental health needs of the Duchenne community. This transformation reflects a deep understanding of the holistic challenges faced by affected families.
As Harrison’s Fund embarks on this new journey, it invites everyone to join hands in supporting this cause. Together, we can make a meaningful difference in the lives of those affected by Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, providing not only hope for a cure but also essential support for their emotional well-being. In this new chapter, Harrison's Fund stands as a beacon of resilience, compassion, and unwavering dedication to the Duchenne community.