By Pam Paul
The City Sentinel Staff
The turnout for the recent Oklahoma City Walk for Multiple Sclerosis (Walk MS OKC) raised nearly $150,000, far above expectations, organizers said.
Over 2,100 people participated, several hundred walkers and $30,000 more than anticipated. It was hailed as a success.
Candace Richardson, Health Resources Advocate for the National MS Society Oklahoma had this to say, “The recent news about changes in government health care programs resulted in more people expressing interest in Advocacy issues. As a society we seek to strengthen all programs and services for people who live with MS. It is wonderful to see more people become involved.”
The event in OKC, which took place at the Oklahoma City Zoo, was just one of several in the state. Others were held in Lawton, Stillwater and Tulsa.
Walk MS is the rallying point of the MS movement, a community coming together to raise funds and celebrate hope for the future. Annually, Walk MS takes place in more than 600 cities nationwide, and is one of the largest fundraising walk events in the United States.
The funds raised on April 30 will support direct services for the more than 3,400 people with MS and their families in Oklahoma and MS research to find a cure for this chronic disease of the central nervous system.
Multiple sclerosis is an inflammatory disease that interrupts the flow of information between the brain and the body and stops people from moving. Every hour in the United States, someone is diagnosed with MS. Symptoms range from numbness and tingling to blindness and paralysis.
The progress, severity and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot be predicted, but advances in research and treatment are moving us closer to an MS-free world. Most people with MS are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50, with more than twice as many women as men affected by the disease.
More than 400,000 people in the United States and 2.5 million worldwide live with MS.
The National MS Society addresses the challenges of each person affected by MS by funding cutting-edge research, by providing advocacy, education, and collaboration, and by providing programs and services designed to help people with MS and their families.
Learn more at www.nationalMSsociety.org/ok or join our local chapter on facebook www.facebook.com/NMSSOklahomaChapter