South Jersey walks for MS

Laura Kane (\'11)/Eastside Staff

On Sunday, May 3, thousands of people across the country walked together to pursue a common goal, find a cure for M.S. The National Multiple Sclerosis Society hosts 600 walk events each year in the United States to help raise money for research.

Multiple Sclerosis is a disabling disease that impairs the nervous system. MS can affect the spinal cord, brain or optic nerves. Those who have MS have symptoms of numbness in limbs or become paralyzed. MS can affect people of all ages, yet there is little treatment.
The National MS Society is a charitable organization made up of volunteers who are dedicated to finding a cure for MS. The organization donates all of its funds to assist those with MS. Events are hosted to raise money for cutting-edge research, as well as programs that help people with MS to cope with the illness and teach them how to continue their everyday lives.Every year, the MS Society divides the country into 11 charters, from New Jersey to Alaska. In each charter, the MS Society group that is located in the area organizes and hosts the walk.

The closest MS Walk in the area this year was at Eastern High School in Voorhees. Registration opened at 9 a.m. and the walk began an hour later. The walk began in the pouring rain, yet volunteers still viewed the walk as a success, as over 450 people took part in the event.

“It was worth walking in the rain because it was a lot of fun, and it’s going to help a lot of people,” said Kristen Olenick (’11), an East student who participated in Sunday’s walk.

Each walker was asked to donate a minimum of 25 dollars towards MS research and programs. Individuals, as well as teams, took part in the walk. Each team created a set goal for the amount of money they wished to raise. Usually teams are created in support of a person who has MS.

My uncle has had MS and for ten years and my family has taken part in the MS Society events to support him. This was my third year participating in the MS walk. By doing something as simple as walking a few miles, I’m bringing those who suffer with MS closer to a cure. Also, the MS walk is a family experience that gives people living with MS hope for finding a cure.

“This is the highlight of my year because I’m no longer the victim of MS,” said Nicole Eiszner, a woman with MS who completed a similar walk in Bergen County.

The MS Society hosts hundreds of walks with thousands of attendees. No matter if a walker is an individual or on a team, each person who takes part in the one day walk contributes to ultimately lifting the spirits of those inflicted with Multiple Sclerosis.