Do you push that exercise off to a later date? Have you ever wondered how many steps you walk in any given day?
The Cerebral Palsy Association of Manitoba (CPAM) has a virtual fundraiser for a third year in a row – “Steptember”. No matter what your skill or fitness level, all are welcome to participate. It’s a chance to enjoy fun, friendship, and fitness during your day, as well as take part in a great team building activity.
Each team, that can be registered online, has up to four people. Individual members will enter their number of steps, or what they did physically, or how long they spent doing this activity during the day. The more active one is, the higher you climb up one of three virtual mountains. This is a national and international fundraiser for groups of people with cerebral palsy (CP).
Funds raised help CPAM’s many programs. These include, presentations to organizations and groups, ongoing research, a lending library of resources, online material, materials about and for people with cerebral palsy, and information and referral. Funds raised also help with grants for scholarships, mobility devices, and communication devices. Funds also help with providing individual support workers, and social outings, such as family retreats.
Rita Denedchezhe has been a member of CPAM since the age of eighteen. She heard about them through a family she lived with who had a child with a disability. Through CPAM, she now has a network of friends and supporters who help her to live independently and be a part of a supportive social circle.
Now she gives back by helping CPAM with advocacy, mail-outs or fundraising activities.
“I just like that we are helping the community. We help other people with disabilities the same way they helped me.”
Mindy Tucker has been a member of CPAM since she was a child when her parents got involved. Through CPAM, she was given a bike and got to ride like many youth, freely and independently.
She also received support through networks of others afflicted with CP, who, when she had a question, would provide answers with empathy and understanding of what she was going through. CPAM also provided a grant for her education.
Now, she is on the board of CPAM, as well as being involved in many different ways including Steptember. She has done this fitness challenge for a few years now and her and her family enjoy climbing the virtual mountains together.
“They have done so much for me and I want to give back.”
What is cerebral palsy?
During the brain’s development from prenatal to about three years of age, damage to the brain may result in CP. The normal messages from the brain to the body, or from the body to the brain are interrupted. (Cerebral – “of the brain”, palsy – “lack of muscle control” – CP)
Depending on the part of the brain affected, cerebral palsy is a group of limitations that affect different individuals in a variety of ways.
CP ranges from slight mobility or speech limitations to significant mobility or speech limitations. It can also lead to seizures, learning disabilities, hardness of hearing, and vision problems. People with CP are like everyone else, they are thinking, feeling people with something to say.
For more info visit: www.cerebralpalsy.mb.ca
How to Get Involved
You can register online on the Steptember webpage. There are short video clips about the fundraiser as well as about people’s experiences with CP. Note, there is a $25 fee or you can collect pledges.
Or you can contact David Kron, the Executive Director of the Cerebral Palsy Association of Manitoba by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at: 204-982-4811.