The Benefits of Walk-a-thon Funds for DBIS Clients

Posted on August 21, 2013

client in wheelchair golfing at camp dawnOver the course of the past five years, the DBIS Heads Up Walk-a-thon has raised funds which have enabled our clients living with the effects of an Acquired Brain Injury (ABI) to access leisure recreational activities and programs that would not have been possible without its existence. At this year’s annual Walk-a-thon, more than $11,000 was raised.  This will go exclusively towards client programming - to fund group activities and outings in the Assisted Living, Outreach and Clubhouse programs, as well as attending small and large scale community activities that some clients would not be able to afford on their own.Thanks to the funding received from last year’s Walk-a-thon, clients from Dale’s Assisted Living, Outreach and Clubhouse programs were able to participate in one of three community activities of their choice earlier this year: a London Knights hockey game, a movie at Rainbow Cinemas, or a dinner outing to Crabby Joe’s restaurant. Feedback from the clients who participated in these activities was extremely positive and they indicated that they were grateful to be able to access these types of activities and hoped to have further opportunities to participate in more events in the future. Walk-a-thon funding was also vital in financing some or all of the cost of a number of our clients attending Camp Dawn, a camp geared to adults who are brain injury survivors. The camp, which is located on an accessible campsite surrounding Rainbow Lake, allows ABI survivors to participate in a variety of activities such as hiking, fishing, canoeing, outdoor sports and cabin challenges.  It also helps to promote their independence and provides them with the opportunity to foster relationships with other ABI survivors. Providing opportunities for clients to access the community and connect with their peers, staff and the public is hugely beneficial for them in order to reduce the potential of becoming socially isolated. Without the funding received from the Heads Up Walk-a-thon, these opportunities would be extremely limited.The Walk-a-thon itself is also a wonderful event that allows our clients to network with the community. After speaking with some clients about their experience at the Walk-a-thon, past and present, and some of the activities that the funding has and will go towards, this is what they had to say:“I like seeing people walk on the track, the people’s family members and I liked seeing the dogs there. The coffee was good.”“Going to Crabby Joe’s was very important to me. I like Crabby Joe’s. It was so awesome! I loved it like crazy! I loved the food there! When do we get to go to Crabby Joe’s again for dinner? Next month?”“It’s meaningful. I enjoy the openness. I can be one of the people.”“I am glad to realize that we have been able to raise some if not all of the funds for activities that we can all enjoy.”“It’s the top of the line greatest!”“The Walk-a-thon is well worth it! Some clients have money to access these activities and some don’t so it evens the playing field for everyone to go and participate. The majority of the clients chose the dinner outing and it was probably one of the first times we all got to sit down together and have a meal and a laugh!”

Meredith Ryckman, Clinical Coordinator

Liked this article on the HeadsUP activities

Great article. We will forward it to all our supporting donors!!