Meet Claudia and Carlos Revilla, MJFF supporters who were featured in the fall 2011 issue of our newsletter, Accelerating the Cure. They took advantage of the Brin Wojcicki Challenge to maximize their giving. Read more below or click here to see the rest of the fall issue.
After a long path to her diagnosis of young-onset Parkinson’s disease at age 46, Claudia Revilla is eager to do “whatever needs to be done” to help others whose lives have been touched by Parkinson’s disease. With two young sons at home — Carlos, 12, and David, 10 — she has many plans for the future. Helping her to fulfill these plans, and to maintain her positive outlook, is her husband, Carlos, whom she calls her greatest coach. “We know what I have now,” she said. “I accept it and do as much as I can. If Michael had the courage to speak up about his PD, then why can’t I?”
Inspired by the Michael J. Fox Foundation’s (MJFF) commitment to maximize donors’ dollars to speed development of a cure, the Revillas made a $500 contribution in December 2010, not long after her diagnosis. She learned more about MJFF and the latest news in PD research at a June Research Roundtable in Chicago, to which Claudia and Carlos traveled from their home in Peoria, Illinois. The passion and expertise of the scientists working with MJFF impressed them both. Claudia, who is in “a race against time,” wanted to do more.
At the Roundtable, the Revillas also heard about the Brin Wojcicki Challenge, which matches new and increased giving (as well as gifts from donors who have not given since 2009 or earlier) dollar for dollar. They quickly decided to make another gift that would fully leverage the opportunity to earn doubled dollars for the Foundation’s research programs. That meant stretching their contribution to $1,500, earning MJFF $1,000 in Brin Wojcicki funds and making the Revillas’ gift of $1,500 worth $2,500 to the Foundation’s efforts to speed a cure.
Claudia explained, “Your money is multiplying. The resources that MJFF has are multiplying. I really hope that we can raise the $50 million to meet the Challenge! No effort — or contribution — is too small.
“There’s so much opportunity for each of us to make a difference,” she concluded. “Together, our small efforts add up to a large result.”