Each year, for the past 6 years, our team has been involved in the planning and execution of Genzyme’s recognition of Rare Disease Day. Beginning with a small breakfast in 2008 for colleagues Massachusetts, we’re delighted that this year’s signature event – a relay race with an Olympic style torch -- will now include colleagues in the Netherlands and Ireland. Every year, Rare Disease Day gets bigger and better!
Since rare diseases are at the heart of Genzyme, Rare Disease Day has a very special place for all us in our corporate headquarters in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Last year, our celebration grew to become a full-days’ worth of activities that revolved around a relay race between several Massachusetts campuses of Genzyme. The relay idea came out of our desire to ensure that the sense of connection and inspiration that comes from Rare Disease Day reached as many Genzyme employees as possible.
This year’s event will start at the Genzyme office in the Netherlands, with an 18 kilometer tandem cycling event that will travel from Naarden to the offices of the Dutch neuromuscular patient organization, VSN. Once cyclists in Naarden complete their leg of the relay, they will pass the torch – via live video link – to colleagues in Waterford, Ireland who will run another leg of the relay. Once their leg is complete, a second passing of the torch will occur between Ireland and Massachusetts. All of these events will include representatives from the patient advocacy community as well as individuals affected by rare diseases.
Rare Disease Day continues to motivate, inspire and connect us at Genzyme not only as colleagues joined by our profession, but as individuals with a desire to participate in a vast global community dedicated to improving the lives of people affected by rare diseases. In our view, this year’s theme, “Rare Disorders without Borders”, couldn’t be more appropriate. Please click here for more information about Genzyme’s involvement in Rare Disease Day.