JBR Honoree Katie Maxwell

Once bedridden by arthritis, this 13-year-old warrior is bouncing back and raring to go.

Please join 13-year-old Katie by registering today in the Arthritis Foundation’s Michigan virtual run! https://bit.ly/3bmp3aH

Here’s her story.

Two years ago, I was a very active athlete, playing basketball, volleyball and running track. Then everything changed in March 2019 when I was diagnosed with seropositive polyarticular arthritis at the age of 12.  

It all started when I began getting unexplained pain and swelling. First came foot pain during my basketball season in late 2018, followed by finger swelling and then shoulder pain. By mid-March, the pain and swelling had spread throughout my body and I could no longer get out of bed. 

Fortunately, my pediatrician identified this as potential juvenile idiopathic arthritis and referred me to the University of Michigan’s pediatric rheumatology department. Since then, I have worked through a series of trial-and-error medications to try and bring the inflammation under control. Each time I tried a new one, I hoped it would finally be the one. This past summer, with a combination of traditional and functional medicines, along with physical therapy, occupational therapy and hand therapy, I finally turned a corner. 

There were a lot of tough days along the way, both physically and emotionally. I remember my mom sitting next to me in bed promising me it would get better. She told me she didn’t know when, but that it would get better. The scariest part was that I didn’t know if it would ever go away.

By sharing my story, I hope other kids will know that things can improve. It is not always easy, but there are better days ahead. Recently, I went running for the first time since my diagnoses. I didn’t get very far, but it felt really good to finally do something like that again.

It’s been a long and challenging road, and while it will be a lifelong journey, I am starting to get back to doing the things I love. My goal is to join the high school ski team this winter and then the track team next spring. I am anxious to get back to competing again and look forward to continued improvements in the future.


I Want to Contribute
I Need Help
  • Donate


    Every gift to the Arthritis Foundation will help people with arthritis across the U.S. live their best life.

  • Volunteer


    Join us and become a Champion of Yes. There are many volunteer opportunities available.

  • Live Yes! INSIGHTS

    Live Yes! INSIGHTS

    Take part to be among those changing lives today and changing the future of arthritis.

  • Partner


    Proud Partners of the Arthritis Foundation make an annual commitment to directly support the Foundation’s mission.


Ways to Give

Every gift to the Arthritis Foundation will help people with arthritis across the U.S. live their best life. Whether it is supporting cutting-edge research, 24/7 access to one-on-one support, resources and tools for daily living, and more, your gift will be life-changing.

Make a Donation

Help millions of people live with less pain and fund groundbreaking research to discover a cure for this devastating disease. Please, make your urgently-needed donation to the Arthritis Foundation now!

Become a Member

Become an Arthritis Foundation member today for just $20 and you'll receive access to helpful tools..... and more. 

Make a Honor or Memorial Gift

Honor a loved one with a meaningful donation to the Arthritis Foundation. We'll send a handwritten card to the honoree or their family notifying them of your thoughtful gift.

Gift Planning

I want information on ways to remember the AF in my will, trust or other financial planning vehicles.


Volunteer Opportunities

The Arthritis Foundation is focused on finding a cure and championing the fight against arthritis with life-changing information, advocacy, science and community. We can only achieve these goals with your help. Strong, outspoken and engaged volunteers will help us conquer arthritis. By getting involved, you become a leader in our organization and help make a difference in the lives of millions. Join us and become a Champion of Yes.

Become a Volunteer

More About Volunteering


Give Just 10 Minutes.

Tell us what matters most to you. Change the future of arthritis.

By taking part in the Live Yes! INSIGHTS assessment, you’ll be among those changing lives today and changing the future of arthritis, for yourself and for 54 million others. And all it takes is just 10 minutes.

Your shared experiences will help:

- Lead to more effective treatments and outcomes
- Develop programs to meet the needs of you and your community
- Shape a powerful agenda that fights for you

Now is the time to make your voice count, for yourself and the entire arthritis community. 

Currently this program is for the adult arthritis community.  Since the needs of the juvenile arthritis (JA) community are unique, we are currently working with experts to develop a customized experience for JA families. 

How are you changing the future?

By sharing your experience, you’re showing decision-makers the realities of living with arthritis, paving the way for change. You’re helping break down barriers to care, inform research and create resources that make a difference in people’s lives, including your own.

Get Started


Meet Our Partners

As a partner, you will help the Arthritis Foundation provide life-changing resources, science, advocacy and community connections for people with arthritis, the nations leading cause of disability. Join us today and help lead the way as a Champion of Yes.


Our Trailblazers are committed partners ready to lead the way, take action and fight for everyday victories. They contribute $2,000,000 to $2,749,000


Our Visionary partners help us plan for a future that includes a cure for arthritis. These inspired and inventive champions have contributed $1,500,00 to $1,999,999.


Our Pioneers are always ready to explore and find new weapons in the fight against arthritis. They contribute $1,000,000 to $1,499,999.


Our Pacesetters ensure that we can chart the course for a cure for those who live with arthritis. They contribute $500,000 to $999,000.


Our Signature partners make their mark by helping us identify new and meaningful resources for people with arthritis. They contribute $250,000 to $499,999.


Our Supporting partners are active champions who provide encouragement and assistance to the arthritis community. They contribute $100,000 to $249,999.