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Making Headway Foundation improves the quality of life and healing of children suffering from brain and spinal cord tumors.  We do this by enhancing medical treatment with caring patient support programs and by funding scientific research geared toward better treatments and cure.

We help children and families in the New York, New Jersey and Connecticut regions.  We also fund scientific research for better treatments and a cure.


One Family’s Experience Becomes a Gift for Many

The Gala Invitation

How do you honor the memory of Holly Lind, a mother, wife and friend who passed away at the age of 33? By bringing hundreds of people together in support of a cause she cared about deeply: Making Headway Foundation. This past summer’s Holly’s Angels Gala was the largest fundraiser in Making Headway history. The 750 guests who showed up to honor Holly, her family and the many children she met at the Hassenfeld Children’s Center—the children she dubbed her “angels”—together raised more than $1.5 million. The fundraiser was the result of a joint effort. For a speaker, Making Headway reached out to its longtime friend and supporter, President Bill Clinton, while Holly’s husband, Keith, reached out to friends, acquaintances and business associates for an audience. President Clinton wasted no time in saying he’d be delighted to make an appearance; the hard part was finding a date and location that worked with his busy schedule.

Once that was settled, it was just a matter of details. Making Headway supporter, Louis Konstantinos Vellios, of Konstantinos Floral Design, donated his genius for décor to create a custom environment at Cipriani’s 42nd Street location. A special dinner committee worked with the Cipriani staff to add distinctive lighting and choose the perfect menu. An Evening of Memories, Laughter and Inspiration The gala was held on the evening of Tuesday, June 26. Celebrity sportscaster Erin Andrews was the emcee, and comedian Seth Meyers lightened the evening with his gentle brand of humor. Keith Lind spoke movingly about Holly, who had been his high school sweetheart, while Making Headway president, Edward Manley, and medical advisor, Dr. Jeffrey Allen, each took a turn to speak about the Foundation’s work.

But not surprisingly, it was President Bill Clinton who brought down the house. President Clinton used his time not just to focus on one of his favorite topics, grassroots philanthropy, but to give his own personal account of knowing the Manleys and express his admiration for Making Headway’s work.

After that, it was time for another first, as Keith Lind returned to the stage with an impassioned appeal for participants to donate again right then and there—through their cell phones. The response not only set a record for Making Headway, which has never done text-based fundraising before, but broke the record of Text to Pledge, the company processing the donations.

All in all, it was a wonderful night, in which the children who had so inspired Holly Lind became an inspiration for us all.

A Message from Catherine Lepone, Director of Development,
Making Headway Foundation

Making Headway

About Making Headway Foundation
When a child is diagnosed with a brain or spinal cord tumor, the future is uncertain; families struggle with anxiety and fear. A strong medical team can help the family take its first crucial steps forward. But reconstructing a life and nurturing a family devastated by the emotional and physical demands of treatment and its aftermath go beyond what a medical environment can provide. The whole family needs a special kind of care and support.

How It Began
Making Headway Foundation was established in 1996 by a small group of parents—Maya and Edward Manley and Clint Greenbaum—whose own children had undergone treatment for brain tumors. They found that traditional hospital-based medical programs failed to provide essential humanistic services that enabled a child to reintegrate physically and emotionally with his or her family, school and peer groups. The founders of Making Headway wished to provide other families with what they had found wanting—even with the finest medical care. Thus began a close collaboration with the Hyman-Newman Institute for Neurology and Neurosurgery (INN) at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York City. From the start, Making Headway was conceived as having three main components: