Event to support the over 4.6 million Canadians living with arthritis
Brantford’s Jane Grant-Henderson, a 55-year-old mom, was diagnosed with osteoarthritis nearly a decade ago, leading to hip and knee replacements. During that time, she was also diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis – a condition she watched her mother struggle with her whole life. Her treatment and support was so improved from what her mother received that Grant-Henderson is determined to help those that come after her – because she has seen the difference that progress can make.
This is just one of the countless stories inspiring individuals and teams from over 30 communities across Canada to gather on Sunday June 9 and take part in the 4th annual Walk to Fight Arthritis presented by the makers of TYLENOL®.
The Arthritis Society’s signature annual fundraiser supports groundbreaking research, programs, education and services for the over 4.6 million Canadians living with arthritis. The Walk also helps build awareness and communicate the importance of movement when dealing with arthritis.
“Movement is something that so many of us take for granted,” says Janet Yale, the Society’s President and CEO. “It comes far less easily for people with arthritis. And yet, movement is helpful in so many ways: it loosens joints and helps relieve pain. So we’re reminding Canadians to keep moving, stay active in whatever capacity they can. At the same time, we’re also growing a movement – a movement of Canadians of every age, from every walk of life, all coming together to help people live well today and to create a future free from arthritis.”
In addition to the Walk itself, each location offers family activities ranging from a mascot race in Paradise, Newfoundland to a teddy bear picnic in Kelowna, BC. Participants can also try their hand at arthritis-themed activities designed to help them relate to the challenges faced by people living with arthritis.
In 2012, more than 7,200 Walk participants raised over $1.5 million to support vital research into treatment and prevention, as well as the delivery of resources, programs and services for people living with arthritis.
Arthritis is the leading cause of disability in Canada, and may cost an estimated $33 billion annually in lost work days and health care costs. Funding is urgently needed to turn the tide on the financial, social and emotional costs of the disease.
Grant-Henderson joined the Walk to Fight Arthritis in 2012 during a particularly bad flare up. She was in a dark period emotionally and had difficulty completing a one-kilometre loop.
This year, she’s eating healthy, following an exercise regime and is ready to tackle the full five-kilometre walk surrounded by her family and friends.
“I value this so much,” she says. “As long as I have this opportunity that I can be mobile, I’m going to be out there and be mobile. I want to show my kids that no matter what challenges you face in life, you’ve got to take control and keep going.”
ABOUT THE ARTHRITIS SOCIETY
The Arthritis Society is dedicated to a vision of living well while creating a future without arthritis. It is Canada’s principal health charity providing education, programs and support to the over 4.6 million Canadians living with arthritis and their loved ones. Since its founding in 1948, The Society has been the largest non-government funder of arthritis research in Canada by investing more than $180 million in projects that have led to breakthroughs in the diagnosis, treatment and care of people with arthritis. For more information, visit www.arthritis.ca.
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