Amanda West has been striving to build her team. She has been working on it sense the beginning of the year. The purpose of this team is to walk the Kalamazoo Multiple Sclerosis 5k. This is the only fundraiser in the area for ms so she needs all the help she can get. Amanda is constantly asking people to join her team or join the committee or to just participate in general to help out the MS community. This walk is a great thing they are doing and hope to see it keep going strong.
KALAMAZOO, MI — The 12th annual Kalamazoo Walk MS, a 5K walk to raise money for multiple sclerosis research, is still weeks away but Amanda West said she and her team, team dreaMS, have been “in walk mode” since just after the first of the year.
“I’m constantly recruiting people on Facebook to walk on my team or start their own team or join the walk committee,” West, captain of the largest Kalamazoo Walk MS team of over 40 people said. “Basically I just remind them that this is the only local fundraiser for MS and we could use all the support we can get.”Courtesy of National MS Society The Kalamazoo MS Walk in 2011.
Kalamazoo Walk MS will begin at 9 a.m. on May 3 at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, 314 S. Park St. with an opening ceremony planned for 9:45 a.m. Last year, 315 participants raised over $28,000 for multiple sclerosis research, Cheryl Rothe, marketing and development specialist for the National MS Society, said.
This year the fundraising goal for Kalamazoo Walk MS has been set at $30,500.
“We’ve got to raise the bar a little bit,” Rothe said. “In addition to participating in this walk there are also 15 Walk MS’s throughout Michigan and we could not do it without our fantastic volunteers who help us out with these events.”
Rothe said she hopes to see downtown Kalamazoo overtaken by walkers in “a sea of orange” again this year. To register for the walk or join a team visit walkms.org.
Rothe said there are also many volunteer opportunities associated with the walk and there can never be enough cheerleaders encouraging the walkers along the way.
“It is so awesome for our attendees to walk across the finish line and see smiling faces and hear hooting and hollering,” Rothe said. “We always appreciate everyone who stops by and supports walk MS.”
West, who was diagnosed with MS, an autoimmune disease affecting the central nervous system, in 2010, said there is nothing like the feeling she gets when she sees the support of her friends and family during the walk.
“It means everything to have my friends and family come support and walk with us,” West said.