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Courtenay prepares for annual MS Walk

Plans are well underway for the 12th annual Comox Valley Scotiabank MS Walk on Sunday, April 10 at the Courtenay Airpark. The Scotiabank MS Walk is the main fundraiser for the North Vancouver Island Chapter of the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada. This chapter serves people affected by MS throughout North Vancouver Island from Bowser to Port Hardy. In 2010, Comox Valley Scotiabank MS Walk participants raised $42,667.06. The funds raised at the walk are used for local programs and support services which enable people affected by MS to enhance their quality of life, and for the annual research donation to find a cure for MS. Imagine — just by walking and raising funds, you are supporting someone in your community affected by MS. Come out to experience a morning full of excitement and hope that one day we will live in a world without MS, and leave knowing that you are a valuable contributor to making it a reality. Register today for the Comox Valley Scotiabank MS Walk online at or by phone at 250-339-0819. More information about the walk is available at As a registered walk participant, you will receive a pledge package to help you raise pledges in advance. Bring your pledges to the check-in and then partake in a brisk morning walk and a wonderful, supportive atmosphere. Arrive early and enjoy coffee, hot chocolate, a snack and entertainment; after the walk stay for lunch, music, recognition announcements and draw prizes. The Scotiabank MS Walk takes place at the Courtenay Airpark which offers a safe, scenic, wheelchair- and scooter-accessible route for participants with three route lengths to choose from: three, seven and 10 kilometres. Dogs on leash are welcome to attend. The walk will start behind the Visitor Information Centre at Cliffe Avenue and 20th Street, and will circle around the Courtenay Airpark including the Courtenay Riverway to 31st Street and back. Check-in takes place from 8 to 9:45 a.m., and the walk begins promptly at 10 a.m. Once again, 386 Air Cadet Squadron band will lead off the walk. Multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable, often debilitating disease of the central nervous system (the brain and spinal cord). MS symptoms are unpredictable and vary widely from person to person. Symptoms may include: vision disturbances such as double vision or blurred vision; extreme fatigue; loss of balance; problems with co-ordination; pain; depression; stiffness of muscles; speech problems; short-term memory problems; and even partial or complete paralysis. It is now estimated that between 55,000 and 75,000 Canadians have MS — one of the highest rates of MS in the world. Most commonly diagnosed between the ages of 15 and 40, it is the most common neurological disease affecting young adults in Canada. MS affects three times as many women as men. The Scotiabank MS Walk always needs volunteers to assist with check-in, entertainment, water stations, ribbon-tying and general assistance. E-mail or call 250-339-0819 if you are interested in volunteering or need more information about the Scotiabank MS Walk. — Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada

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