• 81°

Walk With Me scheduled for April 10

Easter Seals is more than a logo and company name. The organization helps children and adults with disabilities to function on their own.

But they can’t do it alone.

By participating in the Walk With Me one-mile event April 10, each step is in the direction of helping one more child or adult with disabilities learn to function in a traditional classroom or the workforce.

“Our mission is to help them have a quality life,” said Rachel Ratcliff, program coordinator of Easter Seals West Alabama Rehabilitation Center.

Each registration packet includes the name and information of one of the honorary ambassadors of Easter Seals, who serve as a face of the programming.

“Then, each person gets to know who they are walking for,” Ratcliff said.

These ambassadors participated in one of the programs offered by the company. After the walk, everyone is invited to meet them.

This year’s ambassadors are Randy Perry, an employee at Plantation Patterns Furniture Company; Reagan and Amber Stokes, students in a typically developing pre-school; Derrick Morris, an employee at Taco Bell; and Kirabo Todd, a kindergarten student in a typically developing classroom.

“People should participate because it benefits the whole community,” Ratcliff said.

People gain skills at Easter Seals that are then used in their schools and jobs in the local community.

So far, participants have raised more than $8,000 for the event. Although the organization does not have an official goal, Ratcliff would love to see participants raise $10,000.

“All the money raised here stays here,” said Aubrey Grindle, administrative assistant at Easter Seals.

Team or individual participation is available. Registration begins at 7 a.m. and the walk begins at 8 a.m. The cost is $15 per person, children 10 and under are free. Every participant will receive a free T-shirt.

Sign up is available by phone at 334-872-8421, online at www.walkwithme.org/selma, by mail in form or on the day of the event.

Walk With Me is part of a national campaign in more than 50 cities. Nationally, more than 18,000 participants walked in 2009, raising more than $3.6 million for Easter Seals.

Easter Seals of West Alabama serves residents of Dallas, Autauga, Chilton, Perry, Marengo, Wilcox, Lowndes and Bibb counties.