Our Mission

Lori Hartwell founded Renal Support Network (RSN) in 1993 to empower people who have kidney disease to become knowledgeable about their illness, proactive in their care, hopeful about their future and make friendships that last a lifetime.

Lori was diagnosed in 1968 with kidney failure and knows how important hope, peer connection and knowledge is to survive and thrive with an illness.

RSN’s hopeful and life-enriching, non-medical programs help people who have kidney disease and their families, whether they are in the early stages of the disease, are on dialysis, or have received a transplant. People we connect with come to see kidney disease in a totally different light – that although it’s difficult, it is manageable. We help them recognize the need to take control of the course and management of their illness through storytelling. Learning from another patient’s experience and point of wisdom to live successfully and navigate care is vital for success. An Illness is too demanding when you do not have hope. 

RSN strives to make a lasting and positive difference in the lives of people with kidney disease and ensure that healthcare professionals and regulatory agencies legislative leaders that serve us hear what our needs are to have the best care and health possible.

An Illness is too demanding when you do not have hope. –Lori Hartwell

Our History

RSN was founded in 1993 by Lori Hartwell, a CKD survivor.

The influence of this nonprofit, patient-focused, patient-run organization, which started out as a local grassroots effort, now extends across America. RSN’s mission is to identify and meet the nonmedical needs of people affected by CKD, whether they are in the early stages of the disease, are on dialysis, or have received a transplant.

RSN accomplishes this by providing service, support, and advocacy to patients and their families, and by building coalitions within the renal community. RSN strives to help patients with CKD develop their personal coping skills, special talents, and employability by educating and empowering them, as well as their family members, to take control of the course and management of the disease.

RSN Programs

  • Essay Contest for people with kidney disease.
  • EmbraceHOPE Jewelry is assembled by people who have been affected by chronic kidney disease.
  • HOPEline is a centralized toll-free phone line that allows people affected by CKD to call a fellow patient for support. 
  • KidneyTalk! is a unique weekly online radio talk show directed at those affected by CKD.
  • Live & Give―RSN’s biannual newsletter for patients, their families, and health care professionals.
  • Patient Lifestyle Meetings, where patients and their families can learn about life enhancement and illness-related issues. 
  • RenALERT! is an electronic newsletter. Contact us to be added to email distribution.  
  • Renal Teen Prom is one of RSN’s most visible and rewarding efforts. Since 1999, a free, senior prom-type gala for people ages 14-24 who have kidney disease.
  • Wellness & Education Kidney Advocacy Network consists of patient activists banded together with the goal of ensuring that patients with CKD receive quality care. 

 

 

Thanks to our Supporters!