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Unrestricted - General Appeal
Unrestricted gifts are very important to DAN because they can be used wherever the need is greatest. A gift designated by a donor to support specific programs such as the Chamber Support Program must be used to fund that program - even if DAN doesn't have enough funding in the AED Grant Program for a site that more than qualifies for assistance. Unrestricted gifts allow DAN the most flexibility for the most pressing needs.

Likewise, gifts to the DAN Endowment Unrestricted Fund will ensure the availability of this type of funding for today as well as the future.

Gifts to the Unrestricted Fund may be made online.


The DAN Endowment

The DAN Endowment is designed to ensure continuous support of DAN’s Mission for today and for the future. Your gift is added to the principal (corpus) of the fund and never spent. The corpus is invested conservatively, generating income for DAN as designated (unrestricted or research). A portion of the income is reinvested in order to insure stable, long-term growth of the Endowment. The remaining portion of the income is then used to support DAN as designated.

Currently, you may designate your gift to The DAN Endowment as an unrestricted gift or as a gift to support research. Gifts of all amounts are accepted to the Endowment. A named fund under The DAN Endowment may be established with a minimum gift of $10,000. A named fund may be accepted to support endowed unrestricted funding or endowed research funding.

The Peter B. Bennett Endowed Research Fund
This fund is in honor and tribute to the contributions of Peter B. Bennett, Ph.D., D.Sc., founder, president and chief executive officer of Divers Alert Network from its beginnings in 1980 to his retirement on June 30, 2003. Dr. Bennett served DAN for 23 years, providing his guidance and leadership. During his tenure DAN has become the largest non-profit international member organization dedicated to dive safety in the world.

The Peter B. Bennett Endowed Research Fund is established to provide support for research initiatives conducted by and in conjunction with the DAN Department of Research. Available income from the fund will be used to support these research initiatives in support of dive safety.

The Michael J. Norwood Memorial Research Fund
Michael Norwood enjoyed the underwater experience of scuba diving. He was an avid diver, taking advantage of his love of the underwater world to work and to play. He also believed in the importance of expanding knowledge for diving safety and health.

On December 6, 2003, Michael met an early death while scuba diving in Palau while filming an episode of the History Channel program: Deep Sea Detectives, of which he was the co-host.

In memory of Michael, an endowed named fund of The DAN Endowment has been established titled: The Michael J. Norwood Memorial Research Fund. The purpose of The Michael J. Norwood Memorial Research Fund is to provide DAN with funding for research initiatives conducted by DAN Research.

The Elizabeth Anna Halbach (Urban) Memorial Research Fund
Elizabeth Halbach was an avid scuba diver and enjoyed all types of recreational and technical diving. Ever since she began diving at the age of 12, she loved exploring new underwater environments and seeing things few people see. Liz was also extremely aware of the importance of physical and mental fitness and diving safety, and shared the knowledge she gained with everyone she encountered.

On July 14, 2007, Elizabeth passed away at the young age of 28. She died while enjoying her love for scuba diving with her husband Tim, during a cave dive near Ellaville, Florida.

In her honor, The Elizabeth Anna Halbach (Urban) Memorial Research Fund has been established at Divers Alert Network. The purpose of this named fund is to provide DAN with funding for research initiatives conducted by DAN Research.

Planned/Deferred Gifts may be designated as named funds under The DAN Endowment. This is to ensure the recognition of the individual gift over time. For more information about this type of gift, go to Planned/Deferred Giving.

At this time, DAN’s goal is to increase the endowment corpus by at least $200,000 per year.

Gifts to The DAN Endowment may be made online. For additional information on how to contribute to this fund, see Ways To Give, call the DAN Development Office at +1-919-684-2948 x445/446, or send a message. You can also mail to DAN Development, 6 West Colony Place, Durham, NC 27705.


DAN Medical Research Program

The following are current projects of DAN Medical Research that your gift can help support:

Project Dive Exploration
As an observational research study, Project Dive Exploration (PDE) is designed to collect dive profile data on actual recreational dives - not chamber dives. In addition, PDE helps compile information on behavioral and health aspects of recreational divers. This will provide a look into the world of recreational divers: their behavior, dive profiles and any specific characteristics of these divers and their risks of decompression illness (DCI).

The study’s goal is to establish a recreational diving database of safe dives and dives that result in injuries. This collection of data will then serve as a resource for research in dive safety. Since data collection began in 1995 through October 2002, more than 45,000 dive profiles have been collected for the database.

Current Studies:

  • DAN Research Internship Program
    The DAN Research Internship program began in 1999 for the purpose of expanding PDE data collection and providing experience for people in careers in diving or diving-related fields. Recruited largely from undergraduates at universities and medical schools, the interns become DAN liaisons to the diving public, communicating the importance of research for improving the safety of recreational diving.

    DAN trains and mentors the interns in data collection and diving medical research. Interns participate in the program from May through August. They receive training in diving physiology and research methodology, with access with those at DAN who are conducting diving safety research. In addition, they are trained as PDE Field Research Coordinators to collect dive data. They then locate to PDE host sites for two months to collect PDE data. Interns are able to earn college credits for their work.

    To date, DAN has trained ten student interns, who have been placed on the East and West Coasts and in the Caribbean. They have collected more than 5,000 dives.

    DAN has also trained dive instructors in Cozumel, Mexico, in 2000 to collect PDE data year-round from other dive instructors and divemasters. These divers are particularly interesting because they dive often, have aggressive dive profiles, and may have a relatively high DCI incidence. Since December 2000, the three interns have collected 5,500 dive profiles, which included four DCI incidents.

  • Recreational Dive Professionals Study
    Dive professionals in recreational diving experience repetitive diving year round and may be at greater risk of decompression illness (DCI) than recreational divers. This study will follow 50 dive professionals for two years by collecting and analyzing exposure and outcome data of their individual dive profiles. The collection period for this study is 2003 through 2004.

Gifts to the Medical Research program, PDE, or Research Internship program may be made online. For additional information on how to contribute to these programs see Ways To Give, call the DAN Development Office at +1-919-684-2948 x445/446, or send a message.


DAN Medical Services Program

The following are current projects of DAN Medical Services that your gift can help support:

Recompression Chamber Assistance Program
DAN established the Recompression Chamber Assistance program in 1993. Many of the chambers in the Caribbean had limited funding, volunteer staffing, minimal opportunities for training and a regularly scheduled maintenance program. Increased dive travel to the Caribbean brought greater awareness of these issues. DAN decided to get ahead of the curve by initiating an assistance program that would not only ensure the highest level of care available for divers, but also to provide for the future of diving in remote destinations.

DAN assists chambers by providing technical and educational support as well as equipment for recompression chambers in remote locations. This assistance has principally been to marginally staffed and supported facilities in the Caribbean and Central America, but has reached as far out as the South Pacific and right here in the United States. DAN continues to provide training workshops to recompression chamber personnel. Recreational divers travel the world, often visiting remote dive locations with limited resources for recompression facilities and staff training. DAN is trying to fill this gap in health care through this program.

Interested in applying for assistance? Learn More

Gifts to the Recompression Chamber Assistance Program may be made online. For additional information on how to contribute to this program see Ways To Give, call the DAN Development Office at +1-919-684-2948 x445/446, or send a message.


DAN Training Program

The following are current projects of DAN Training that your gift can help support:

Oxygen Grant Program
In a dive emergency, whether the diver is suffering from decompression sickness or an arterial gas embolism, the primary first aid treatment to offer is oxygen first aid.

Through the Oxygen Grant Program, DAN provides emergency oxygen units to deserving departments and organizations by providing DAN Oxygen Units to public safety diving teams and/or organizations that can demonstrate critical operational and financial need. These grant requests are decided on a case-by-case basis. Training in the use of the equipment by attending a DAN Oxygen First Aid for Scuba Diving Injuries course is a mandatory requirement to being considered for the grant.

AED (Automated External Defibrillators) Matching Grant Program
More than 200,000 people die each year from sudden cardiac arrest in the United States. Most sudden cardiac arrest is caused by ventricular fibrillation (VF). For every minute a heart experiences VF, the chance of survival drops by 7 to 10 percent - even with CPR.

Divers are not more susceptible to this problem; neither are they immune, especially as they get older. Divers are, however, frequently more than 10 minutes away from emergency medical services, either at the local rock quarry or out on a dive boat. The only way to reset a heart in VF is with defibrillation - the application of an electric shock across the heart. Until just the last few years, defibrillators were too expensive or too difficult for lay rescuers to use.

Today, Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) allow first aid providers to provide the much-needed emergency care. DAN created a training program to teach divers how to use Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) in a dive setting. Recognizing the life-saving potential of AEDs, DAN offers the AED Matching Grant Program to provide matching money to qualifying dive operations, dive destinations and dive groups who wish to purchase an AED and make it available to divers.

Gifts to the Oxygen Grant Program and AED Matching Grant Program may be made online. For additional information on how to contribute to these programs see Ways To Give, call the DAN Development Office at +1-919-684-2948 x445/446, or send a message.


DAN Business Membership Program

The following is the current project of DAN Business Membership that your gift can help support:

Diver Identification
This program is designed to provide charter boats and dive sites with a diver identification system to help reduce the incidence of abandonment of lost divers. At the beginning of the dive, the divemaster assigns each diver an individually numbered tag. When the diver is out of the water, the tag is placed on a board. Before diving, the diver removes the tag and clips it to the BCD. The tag number corresponds to the divemaster’s roster number. When returning to the boat, the diver returns it to the board. The captain/divemaster knows who is on board and who remains in the water.

Gifts to the DIDS Program may be made online. For additional information on how to contribute to this program see Ways To Give, call the DAN Development Office at +1-919-684-2948 x445/446, or send a message.


DAN Continuing Medical Education Program (CME)

The following is a current project of DAN Continuing Medical Education that your gift can help support:

Divers Days
In keeping with the DAN Mission to ensure that recreational diving is as safe as possible, Divers Days, cosponsored with community hyperbaric chambers, were first introduced by DAN in 2000. These one-day educational events carry the theme of "Safer Diving Through Education with DAN," and are planned to bring educational resources to the diving communities across the nation. Internationally known and local experts spend the day addressing diving safety and medical topics and other dive-related topics of interest. Divers Days provide an opportunity to meet diving experts, hear the latest in diving safety and medicine, and candidly be able to speak with the speakers.

Gifts to the Divers Days program may be made online. For additional information on how to contribute to this program, contact the DAN Development Office at +1-919-684-2948 x445/x446 or send a message.

Ways to Give