We Listen. We Build. It's Working. Keep It Growing.

Dear Friend,

At Next Step, we take two crucial actions to help young people with serious illness: we listen and we build. Our process is making a big impact and we need your help to keep it growing.

We listen. Teens and young adults living with cancer, HIV or a rare genetic disorder have shared their stories with us. Some are stories of surviving, many are stories of loss. All express the devastating emotions that come with isolation and stigma, and of being unable to picture a future with even a glimmer of hope or success.

"For people like me, we have no option...we're seen as nothing more than our wheelchairs, our defects, our illness." - NEXT STEP PARTICIPANT, AGE 17

We build. With their voices as our guide, we create and deliver programs informed by the young people. Our programs are designed to address the critical needs and issues specific to these deserving teens and young adults.

"Next Step staff has an amazing ability to create an environment where teens and young adults who typically feel ostracized and alone because of their illness can come together and feel empowered." - NEXT STEP PARTICIPANT, AGE 21

And it's working. Since our founding in 2001, over 7,500 young people have benefited from Next Step programming. In the last year,

  • 52 Next Step Ambassadors spoke at public events to advocate for their illness, build awareness or simply tell their story to educate and inspire.
  • Next Step has doubled the number of Next Step Campferences, our residential program, in the last 2 years.
  • In Next Step Song Studio, young people have written close to 100 original songs, sharing the experience of their personal journey. 


"Illness changed my life for the worse. Next Step changed my life for the better." - NEXT STEP PARTICIPANT, AGE 23

But with medical advances, the number of teens and young adults living with serious illness is increasing, and the need for Next Step programming is growing more critical. We're ready to reach and support even more young people as they transition to adulthood - but we need your help. Please consider making a donation to the 2018 Next Step Annual Appeal and help us Keep It Growing.

With warm regards,

Bill Kubicek