March of Dimes plans for newest fund-raiser to fight for premature babies

Published 12:00 am Thursday, February 19, 2004

The Selma-Dallas County chapter of the March of Dimes held a kick-off breakfast early Wednesday morning in order to gear up supporters for the fourth annual Walk-A-Thon.

The WalkAmerica 2004 is set to take place at 9 a.m. on April 3 at the Memorial Stadium.

Sanders said the organization’s goal is to get corporate and local sponsors to establish teams for the upcoming Walk-A-Thon.

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Sanders said the Walk-A-Thon is a national event that occurs each April, usually involving 1100 communities across the country.

The March of Dimes is a national voluntary health agency committed to funding research, community service, and education to save babies.

According to the March of Dimes, over 470,000 babies are born prematurely each year. At least 183 premature babies are born in Alabama each year.

The organization’s statics show that premature birth is the leading cause of death in newborns. Those that manage to survive often face a lifetime of disabilities.

At the April Walk-A-Thon, those that contribute between $100 to $200 receive a WalkAmerica T-shirt.

A $200 to $500 donation brings walkers a nylon windbreaker.

The $500 to $1,000 donation

incentive is a fleece blanket and those that contribute more than a $1,000 receive a stadium seat.

As Sanders pointed out, the purpose of the Walk-A-Thon is not about prizes, it’s about saving lives.

For example, a $250 contribution to the March of Dimes could provide 50 pregnant women with classes on how to recognize the signs and symptoms of preterm labor.

Sanders said he is looking forward to the Walk-A-Thon and hoping for a big crowd in April.

For more information on the WalkAmerica Walk-A-Thon, Sanders can be contacted at 874-1680 or 874-8741.