Ken Aidekman, Co-founder of the Parkinsonís Unity Walk reflects on the walkís growth over the last 21 years as we look forward to this yearís event which is taking place on Saturday, April 25 in New York Cityís Central Park. †Register to walk today!†
Twenty-one years ago, I witnessed 200 walkers come together in New York City to raise $16,000 for Parkinsonís research. This year on April 25, over 10,000 walkers are expected to gather at the 2015 Parkinsonís Unity Walk in Central Park and raise over 100 times more than we did that first year.
As Co-founder of the Parkinsonís Unity Walk, I have been truly impressed by the grassroots efforts of the Parkinsonís community. I saw Margot Zobel, founder of the Unity Walk, take a simple idea and turn it into a dynamic force for good. She sensed the potential of the Parkinsonís community in New York, and turned it into an opportunity for people around the world. She believed individuals have the power to change lives through creative cooperation.
Each year, you can feel the energy that Zobel brought to the first Unity Walk. Families travel from all over the country to support one another as they proudly wear t-shirts and hold up signs supporting grandparents, parents, spouses, children or friends.
The Unity Walk brings together many individual teams, who together can hope to one day end Parkinsonís disease. We take pride in our accomplishments in fostering a sense of community as we fund research. 100% of the donations to the Parkinsonís Unity Walk go to research funded by seven major Parkinsonís organizations, including The Michael J. Fox Foundation. Over the years, our efforts have funded hundreds of research studies. The Unity walk is also a day of education with representatives from sponsors and foundations on site to share information and resources with patients and their families.
Each step we take is another step closer to ending Parkinsonís disease. Make your steps count by joining us for the 21st Parkinsonís Unity Walk on Saturday, April 25. Register at www.unitywalk.org.