On Saturday, May 19th, I participated in the Great Strides Atlanta walk in Suwanee, GA. It was the largest cystic fibrosis walk in the United States that raised over $2.2 million with the help of 3,500 striders (source). Go Atlanta!
What is cystic fibrosis?
According to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, it’s a “progressive, genetic disease that causes persistent lung infections and limits the ability to breathe over time. In people with CF, a defective gene causes a thick, sticky buildup of mucus in the lungs, pancreas, and other organs. In the lungs, the mucus clogs the airways and traps bacteria leading to infections, extensive lung damage, and eventually, respiratory failure. In the pancreas, the mucus prevents the release of digestive enzymes that allow the body to break down food and absorb vital nutrients.”
Why did I get involved?
My friend, Ashley, invited me and my peers to join her family’s team this year to raise awareness and funds for CF and to participate in the Great Strides Atlanta walk. Her 20-year-old brother, William, was born with cystic fibrosis and has been living with it ever since. Without any hesitation, I decided to join Team Palomino. Together, we raised over $2,000 for CF research in a short amount of time!
Additionally, we walked 5 kilometers (~3.1 miles) around Suwanee Town Center in our blue “I Stride Until CF Stands for Cure Found” t-shirts to spread the word and raise awareness of cystic fibrosis.
How can you help?
There are several ways you can help patients with cystic fibrosis. You can . . .
- Become educated on CF: read articles, watch videos, speak with patients & their families, etc.
- Teach others about CF: pass your knowledge on to others so they can become educated too
- Donate: search for CF fundraisers and donate any amount to help fund research and treatments
- Start a fundraiser: set a goal and work towards it by starting a campaign online or in person
- Participate in a CF walk: search for one in your area, register for it, and show up on the day of it
- Invite others to participate in a CF walk: encourage your family, friends, and peers to join you
This was my first time getting involved in the Georgia Chapter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, and it certainly will not be my last, in shaa Allah. I’m planning to participate more throughout this year and to go all out at the 2019 Great Strides Atlanta walk. 🙂 Let’s work together to raise awareness, fund research and treatments, and find a cure so we can help add tomorrows for people with cystic fibrosis.