Having problems?
Other Events

Go Mobile

Get the app now >

Team Breakthrough FAQ's

Click on a section to see more information.

What is the history and mission of the ABTA?+

Founded in 1973, the American Brain Tumor Association (ABTA) was the first national nonprofit organization dedicated solely to brain tumors. For 40 years, the ABTA has been providing comprehensive resources that support the complex needs of brain tumor patients and caregivers, as well as the critical funding of research in the pursuit of breakthroughs in brain tumor diagnosis, treatment and care.


The mission of the American Brain Tumor Association is to advance the understanding and treatment of brain tumors with the goals of improving, extending and, ultimately, saving the lives of those impacted by a brain tumor diagnosis.


We do this through interactions and engagements with brain tumor patients and their families, collaborations with allied groups and organizations, and the funding of brain tumor research.


What is Team Breakthrough?+

Team Breakthrough is the American Brain Tumor Association’s (ABTA) endurance training program. Team Breakthrough allows runners - from beginners to the more advanced - to participate in endurance events nationwide, while raising funds and awareness to advance the understanding and treatment of brain tumors.


Which events is Team Breakthrough a charity partner?+

What if I want to run more than one Team Breakthrough Charity Partner Event?+

We would love for you to run more than one event with Team Breakthrough! Please email Kali Drews at kdrews@abta.org if you are interested in running multiple events. You will be asked to register for one event and given a promo code to waive the registration fee for other events.

Can I participate in a Team Breakthrough Charity Partner event if I have my own entry?+

Yes, absolutely! If a participant has gained entry on their own into one of the races Team Breakthrough is a charity partner with, they may still join Team Breakthrough. Please email Kali Drews at kdrews@abta.org or call 773-577-8761 for more information about how to be added to the team..


What if I want to participate in an event that is not a Charity Partner event?+

There is a Choose Your Own option for anyone who wishes to participate in an endurance event, in addition to those Team Breakthrough is a charity partner with, on behalf of the ABTA. Participants will need to secure their own entry in the event they choose to participate and then register with Team Breakthrough to be eligible for team benefits.


Can I form a team to participate with Team Breakthrough in an event?+

Each participant on the team is required to meet the fundraising minimum for the event. If you have any questions about forming a team for a Team Breakthrough event, please contact Kali Drews at kdrews@abta.org or 773-577-8761.


Are there opportunities for my company to form a corporate team?+

Yes, absolutely! Forming a corporate team with Team Breakthrough is a great way to promote employee wellness and support a cause important to staff within the company. For more information on forming a corporate team, please contact Kali Drews at kdrews@abta.org or 773-577-8761.


Is there a registration fee for joining Team Breakthrough?+

Yes, to help cover operating costs of the program, there is a registration fee to join Team Breakthrough. Registration fees based on the event and benefits offered for each.


What is my fundraising minimum?+

The fundraising minimum depends on the event and whether a participant registers with Team Breakthrough prior to or after a lottery closes (if applicable). For Charity Partner events, the fundraising minimums are:

2016 United Airlines NYC Half - $1,000

Bank of America Chicago Marathon - Pre Drawing $1,000/ Post Drawing $1,500

Rock 'n' Roll Marathon Series $750

Tough Mudder $750

There is no fundraising minimum to participate in an endurance event with the Choose Your Own option but participants qualify for a Team Breakthrough running shirt ($200) and Team Breakthrough incentive program ($1,000) depending on amount raised.


What happens if I don’t reach my fundraising minimum?+

As with similar endurance programs, the ABTA collects credit card information and each participant will be asked to sign an agreement upon registration with Team Breakthrough stating that if they do not reach their fundraising minimum by a designated date (in most cases, one month post event), their credit card will be charged the difference. Credit cards will not be charged until the participant is notified and every effort is made to help each participant reach their fundraising minimum. If a participant’s credit card is charged, it is considered a tax deductible donation as with any other donor.


What kind of support will I receive to help with my fundraising?+

Once a participant registers with Team Breakthrough, they will receive access to their Participant Center which allows them to create their own personal fundraising page, utilize email templates to send to potential donors and other resources including a Participant Guide and fundraising tips. A dedicated ABTA staff member is also available to help Team Breakthrough members with their fundraising and offer support. For questions related to fundraising and to get started, please contact Kali Drews at kdrews@abta.org or 773-577-8761.

What happens if I get injured and I’m unable to participate in my event?+

If a Team Breakthrough participant is injured and unable to participate in an event, they’re asked to contact Kali Drews at kdrews@abta.orgor 773-577-8761 as soon as possible. For participants who have secured entry into a race through Team Breakthrough and have not reached their fundraising minimum, a medical note will be required.

How will the funds raised from my participation with Team Breakthrough be used?+

The funds raised allow the ABTA to provide vital brain tumor resources to patients and their families, fund promising research studies, and conduct nationwide brain tumor educational programs. For more information, please visit www.abta.org.


Will the ABTA acknowledge my donors? +

Tax acknowledgement letters are sent to anyone who donates $25 or more directly to the ABTA. If a donor donates less than $25 (or makes a cash donation) and would like to receive a tax acknowledgement letter, it may be sent upon request with the appropriate contact information.


What should I do with cash donations?+

It’s not recommended to send cash in the mail. Participants, in this case, may wish to send a personal check or cashier’s check including a detailed account of cash donations received with first and last names, amount of each donation and email and mailing addresses for each donor.


Where do I send my donations? Can my donors send checks directly to the ABTA?+

Yes, donations may be sent to:

American Brain Tumor Association

Attention: Team Breakthrough

8550 W Bryn Mawr Ave., Suite 550

Chicago, IL 60631

Please include the name of your event and make checks payable to: ABTA


May I accept contributions and write a check to the ABTA from my personal account?+

Participants should not accept checks made out to them personally with the intention of writing a check to the ABTA. Donors will not receive acknowledgment for their donation unless it is made directly to the ABTA. If a donor writes a check to a participant, it may be endorsed with their signature and by writing “Made Payable to the American Brain Tumor Association” on the back of the check.


Does the ABTA accept matching gifts? +

Yes, matching gifts are a great way to double or even triple a donor’s gift! Don’t forget to remind your donors to ask their employers to see if they have a matching gift program. You may also click here to find out if a company offers matching gifts. Donations must be made directly to the American Brain Tumor Association in order for the organization to qualify to receive their company’s matching gift.


Do matching gifts apply to my fundraising minimum?+

Yes, matching gifts may apply toward your fundraising minimum as long as the ABTA receives the proper paperwork prior to the deadline. For questions related to matching gifts, please contact Kali Drews at kdrews@abta.org or 773-577-8761.

Who is my contact at the ABTA with any questions or if I need support?+

Kali Drews, Advancement Specialist, Events is the ABTA contact for the Team Breakthrough endurance program. She may be reached at kdrews@abta.org or 773-577-8761.