Arthritis Foundation Expands Annual Juvenile Arthritis Conference to Two Locations

Phoenix and Philadelphia sites of 32nd annual conference for kids & family

ATLANTA, July 11, 2016 – Kicking off during Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month, the Arthritis Foundation is hosting two Juvenile Arthritis Conferences over the next five weeks. Almost 2,000 children and family members – a record attendance number – will gather in Phoenix, July 14–17, and Philadelphia, Aug. 11–14, to learn more about coping with their disease and meet other families who share their journey.

Arthritis afflicts nearly 300,000 children in the United States – and July is the month devoted to raising awareness for their cause. Each year, the Arthritis Foundation hosts the Juvenile Arthritis Conference for these children and families to join together and support one another while they work to overcome their everyday challenges. The conference provides attending children and their family members with the opportunity to make lasting friendships while participating in both educational sessions and fun activities throughout the event.

This year’s conference, themed “Stronger than Arthritis,” will feature a number of events for participants, including:

  • Opening night dinner themed State Night, allowing attendees to show their hometown spirit by wearing a state shirt or favorite sports team gear
  • A meet and greet with actress Grace Bannon, best known for her recurring role in the hit television series “The Middle,” who was diagnosed with JA at the age of 15
  • Programming tracks for children, young adults and parents, including breakout sessions, reflection time and parent networking opportunities
  • Presentations from rheumatologists, researchers, arthritis advocates and inspirational speakers
  • The presentation of the 2016 JA Awards of Excellence, recognizing outstanding leaders in the categories of youth, parent, health care professional and physician

The Arthritis Foundation offers life-changing programs, support and resources that are tailored to the unique needs and challenges of children and families with arthritis and rheumatic diseases. The conference is designed to provide a place where families are understood, can make connections and leave knowing that they have an entire community fighting for them.

“We are proud to host the 32nd JA Conference, bringing together children and their families who are affected with this disease together. The conference has positively impacted tens of thousands of lives since 1984,” said Ann Palmer, Arthritis Foundation president and CEO. “Our hope is that those attending are fueled with even greater courage and passion to conquer JA and other childhood rheumatic diseases. By coming together, we are one step closer to a cure.”

The conference is made possible by the contribution of generous sponsors including Abbvie, Novartis, Amgen, Genentech and Medac Pharma. Additional information on juvenile arthritis and this year’s conference is available at


About the Arthritis Foundation:

The Arthritis Foundation is the Champion of Yes. Leading the fight for the arthritis community, the Foundation helps conquer everyday battles through life-changing information and resources, access to optimal care, advancements in science and community connections. The Arthritis Foundation’s goal is to chart a winning course, guiding families in developing personalized plans for living a full life – and making each day another stride toward a cure. The Foundation also publishes Arthritis Today, the award-winning magazine that reaches 4million readers.