Walking is great exercise. It helps keep you healthy, gets you out in the fresh air and is a wonderful way to relax. It’s also a fabulous way to raise money for your favorite charity.
Two walking-related items are near and dear to my heart, and I hope you’ll consider both.
SKECHERS Pier to Pier Friendship Walk
First up is the October 27 SKECHERS Pier to Pier Friendship Walk. Based in Manhattan and Hermosa Beach in Southern California, the walk raises money to support children with special needs, as well education in the South Bay (the area of L.A. County that includes the two beach towns).
This is a triple-hitter for me – I was raised in Hermosa Beach, I have a child with special needs, and I love to walk. After attending the blogger press conference about the walk, I was totally hooked. According to Jill Jensen, the manager of Events & Outreach for SKECHERS Foundation, over 10,000 people are expected at this year’s event. That’s impressive for a fundraiser in only its fifth year. In 2009, the inaugural year, 1,712 walkers raised $220,000. This year the goal is $1 million.
I will be part of the Fresh Brothers Pizza team. I met the owner at the press conference and was so impressed by her generosity to kids that I’m now a customer for life. I also met the director of the Friendship Circle of the South Bay, Jason Flentye, and was moved to tears by what they do. Knowing that special needs kids already have lots of institutional support (IEPs, OT, PT – you will know these abbreviations if you hang around with special needs kids – speech therapy, medical, mobility therapy, vision), Friendship Circle focuses on what the kids themselves want – friendships. They match up volunteer typical students with special needs students, with an emphasis on fun. I can say (almost without crying) that my kid lacks friends. He has lots of people who are nice to him, yet no-one who invites him to anything. Not since 5th grade. He’s now in 11th. It’s possible that I care about this more than he does, as he’s quite a happy guy. So, yeah, I REALLY like what Friendship Circle offers.
After the press conference, I walked the Pier to Pier route – literally, it goes from the Manhattan Beach pier to the Hermosa pier- just to get pics to share with you all. And to revisit my childhood town, as I only rarely go there.
I hope you’ll be moved by the mission (or the beach pictures) to join me on Sunday the 27th. Some walkers are even coming from as far as New York, so you have no reason not to join in! It’s only $25 ($30 day of) to register. Or you can donate to my team. I want to send my son to one of their camps next summer, and if you donate they might just have enough money to include him.
The other walking-related item I want to mention is the Charity Miles app. I’ve used this app for quite a while and recommend it. Super easy – you download it FOR FREE. When you walk, you designate one of their many charities as the “recipient” of your walk miles FOR FREE. The founders and their sponsors then pay money to the charity you chose, based on the total mileage. Get it? You pay nothing; you walk and get fit; a charity gets money thanks to you. How can you resist? Oh, you can also run or bike, but I think running is evil unless it’s a soccer game, and my bike has cobwebs because we live on a mountain with nowhere safe to ride.
I hope you download and use it.
What are your favorite charitable events?
I was not paid anything to tell you about either of these laudable walking items. SKECHERS gave me a free pair of shoes to thank me for coming to the press conference. I paid to register for the walk with my very own plastic credit card.
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