IWU Sigma Kappa walks for Alzheimer’s

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Emily Considine

 

Illinois Wesleyan University’s Sigma Kappa chapter participated in a charitable walk to help end Alzheimer’s disease. On Sept. 20, 2014 at the Normal Corn Crib, at least 80 percent of the chapter attended the event, along with some of their family members and those affected by the disease either directly or indirectly.
“The turnout at the Alzheimer’s walk was great, as it’s an entire community event with people from all over the Bloomington area,” Sigma Kappa Rhainy Damm said.   “That’s why Sigma Kappa loves to do events for our philanthropy where we get to join with people personally affected by Alzheimer’s and those who are just willing to help out a great cause,”
Alzheimer’s disease is an irreversible, progressive mental deterioration that can occur in middle or old age due to generalized degeneration of the brain. It is the most common cause of premature senility. It slowly destroys memory and thinking skills and, eventually, even the ability to carry out the simplest tasks of daily living. In most Alzheimer’s cases, symptoms first appear after age 60.
“My grandfather was taken from us due to Alzheimer’s. He fought it for ten years and it affected my family tremendously, so every year we walk and raise money in honor of him,” said Illinois Wesleyan alumna Stephanie Buhrow. “This year and last year we were the number one donor team, raising $1200. I know my grandpa would be proud.”
The Alzheimer’s Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s is the world’s largest event to raise awareness and funds for care, support and research of the disease. Held annually in more than 600 communities nationwide, this event calls on participants of all ages and abilities to reclaim the future for millions.
“We always have a great turn out every year in our chapter, including our newest members,” said Sigma Kappa Alyssa Berry. “It’s a great way to bring our sisters and community together. We had the University of Illinois SK chapter join us this year as well.”

This year’s walk raised nearly $30,000. The funds raised are used to help families across the country by continuing to provide and enhance programs focusing on education and support.  Most importantly, the funds help to advance critical research studies in methods of treatment, prevention and, ultimately, a cure.
Sigma Kappa was one of the first Greek organizations to focus on gerontology, the social, psychological and biological aspects of aging and then Alzheimer’s. “I love that the Alzheimer’s association is one of our main philanthropies because it affects most of the people in the house in one way or another,” said Sigma Kappa President Jessica Allhands.
The chapter is combining two of their philanthropies this Sunday – the Alzheimer’s Association and Inherit the Earth, where they will be picking up litter around campus and other locations and also going to Sugar Creek Alzheimer’s Home to pick up garbage on their land and plant flowers. Sigma Kappa is holding a pancake breakfast Oct. 26 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. All proceeds will go to the Alzheimer’s Association.