Members of the community will be celebrating life with hope this week, as the Walk for ALS event encourages friends and family to strut together on Sept. 15.
ALS – Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, commonly referred to as Lou Gehrig’s disease – is a devastating terminal disease that destroys the voluntary muscles of the body and can sometimes affect the senses. ALS can strike anyone, at any age.
“This walk is important, as it raises awareness in the community and brings together friends and family to work towards a cure,” said Adele Fraser, a coordinator for the local walk. “This is a really important chance to celebrate hope, in a situation where, often, people don’t find any.”
For many ALS patients real breakthroughs can take place within their lifetime. However, while people wait for that, Fraser says an emphasis has to be placed on the important supports out there to mentor those adjusting to the stressful new realities of living with a chronic disability.
“When someone faces the most frightening diagnosis imaginable, it means so much to know hope is there and that you are not alone,” said Wendy Toyer, executive director of ALS Society of BC & Yukon. “I am inspired daily by the courage and tenacity of those we serve.”
There are 15 walk locations in B.C. and Yukon, with the local walk happening Sunday, Sept. 15, 11:30 a.m. at the University of Victoria, Parking Lot 6. This year’s B.C. and Yukon goal is to raise more than $600,000. All proceeds will go towards ALS Patient Services and ALS Research into the cause of, and cure for ALS.
“Most people living with ALS want to help others, and they want to contribute,” said Toyer. “They want to stay active and relevant. This is possible if they have the right support. We can provide this.”
Everyone is welcome to join the walk, and there is no registration fee. Learn more and register at walkforals.ca.