There are over 100,000 Canadians living with Parkinson’s disease, with as many as 6,600 new cases of Parkinson’s being diagnosed each year. Canadian actor, author, producer and activist, Michael J. Fox, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease at just 29 years old and has since gone on to become an advocate towards finding a cure for the progressive disease by creating the Michael J. Fox Foundation. Their mission is to work tirelessly with one goal in mind, and that’s to accelerate breakthroughs for patients suffering from Parkinson’s disease; for example, finding treatments that can either slow, stop or reverse the progression of Parkinson’s disease, as well as find better treatments for the often under-addressed symptoms that are associated with Parkinson’s disease, and address the debilitating side effects that come along with current drugs used to treat Parkinson’s.
While April was Parkinson’s Awareness Month, that doesn’t mean the conversation should end. There is still plenty that can be done to keep the conversation going, to raise awareness, and to join the fight against Parkinson’s disease. One of the biggest events towards this is the Parkinson SuperWalk – one of the most important national awareness and fundraising campaign events for Parkinson Canada. Established in 1965, Parkinson Canada has helped provide educational tools and support to hose living with Parkinson’s disease and their families, as well as professionals in the healthcare industry such as doctors and pharmacists. Just like the Michael J. Fox Foundation, Parkinson Canada also supports funding towards research and better treatment, and ultimate hopes that a cure will one day be found.
Whether you’re participating in the Parkinson SuperWalk as a walker yourself, or a supporter of a walker, your contributions help either way. By participating in the walk and making a donation towards your local Parkinson society, you are helping your community in a big way. Not only do donations help support research, but they also help Parkinson Canada advocate for issues that are important to the Parkinson’s community, allows for leading authorities to share their knowledge, and funding even helps provide extended counselling services. In addition, lending your support also helps to remind those are affected by Parkinson’s disease that they are not alone in their fight.
This year, communities across the country have organized the Parkinson SuperWalk to take place on the weekends of September 8th, 9th, 15th and 22nd. As mentioned, funds raised during this walk help support critical Parkinson’s programs support and advocacy services, as well as contributes towards research. As an incentive, those who raise $50 or more will receive a commemorative Parkinson SuperWalk t-shirt, while a $200 IGA gift card and FitBit Alta HR are also up for grabs for the top fundraisers. For more information on the Parkinson SuperWalk and how you can get involved, visit http://donate.parkinson.ca.
If you or someone you know is struggling with Parkinson’s disease, you can reach out to Parkinson Canada directly by e-mailing [email protected] or by calling their information and referral line, toll-free, at 1-800-565-3000. These services are free, and any information you share with them will remain confidential. Visit www.parkinson.ca for more details.