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  • Vermilion Voice

Upcoming Lloydminster Parkinson – Step n’ Stride

The Lloydminster Region of the Parkinson Association of Alberta will be hosting their 7th Annual Flexxaire Parkinson Step n’ Stride fundraising walk on September 7, at Bud Miller Park. According to the Parkinson Association of Alberta, Parkinson disease is a progressive, neurodegenerative brain disorder for which there is no known cause or cure. Parkinson disease is characterized by both motor and non-motor symptoms. For over 40 years, the Parkinson Association of Alberta has been, and continues to be, the only charitable organization dedicated to improving the well-being and day-to-day lives of Albertans living with and affected by Parkinson disease and Parkinson’s Plus Syndromes. They provide no cost specialized support, education, information and resources and low-cost programming to those living with Parkinson disease, their families, care partners, friends and health care providers across Alberta. They also aim to innovate and inspire by profiling researchers and clinical trial opportunities, and committing crucial funds for research. One on one / family supportive counselling services offered via in person or by telephone are a confidential and safe place to ask questions, talk about stresses and concerns, establish goals and create action plans to live life to its fullest with Parkinson’s. Attending a support group can be a great way to learn about Parkinson’s, develop better coping skills, and feel less isolated as you make connections with others facing similar challenges. Other programs address symptom management and physical programs for some clients can possibly slow down the progression of the disease. Clandonald’s Larry Garnier was diagnosed with Parkinson’s December 17, 2008 and one of his biggest challenges currently is difficulty walking. He attends the support group in Lloydminster for voice and movement exercises and is hoping is enough people join that they could begin one in Vermilion. “For Parkinson's people stress is not exactly the best thing, so when the weather limits travel, we aren’t always able to make it. Not only that, Parkinson Disease causes depression and anxiety, and there is only so much medication that can be taken to maintain a level balance. In addition, there are many trips that have to be taken to the city,” said Lorna Garnier. They also noted that there is a boxing group in Lloydminster hoping to start being able to have people with Parkinson’s participate in the future. . The Parkinson Association of Alberta receives no consistent financial support from the government for the services they provide. They rely on fundraising initiatives and the generosity of donors and sponsors to ensure continued support for those they serve. “You can help raise funds and awareness for Parkinson disease so that all Albertans have access to the support and services they need to live well with Parkinson’s. Many people from Vermilion and area travel quite a distance to participate,” said Sherry Bower-Gagne, Client Services Coordinator.

For more information, you can call 780-808-5006, or visit Donation forms can be found at the Vermilion Voice, cheques can be made out to “Parkinson Association of Alberta,” and those over $20 will receive a tax receipt.

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