The National Kidney Foundation Serving Maryland and Delaware will hold its 11th annual Southern Delaware Kidney Walk, Sunday, April 28, at Cape Henlopen State Park in Lewes.
More than 600 people are expected to step up to raise awareness of kidney disease, organ donation, and the importance of early screening and healthy lifestyle for those at risk.
“Participating in Kidney Walk can help save lives,” said event Chair Kristy Ferracci, a Fresenius Kidney Care dialysis technician who donated a kidney to her husband 12 years ago.
“NKF reminds walkers that it only takes two simple tests at your primary care doctor’s office to check for any red flags. That’s important, because kidneys are essential to keeping us alive and healthy,” said Ferracci. “As a matter of fact, when kidneys stop working, so do you. So, let’s give kidneys some love!"
Check-in begins at 10 a.m. at the picnic pavilion, and the walk kicks off at 11 a.m. Participants can choose from a 3-mile route or a shorter, patient-friendly route for strollers and wheelchairs. The event also features entertainment, refreshments from Starbucks, Giant and Panera, a petting zoo, photo booth, interactive vendor booths and the Kidney Kids Corner with face painting and games sponsored by Kohl’s.
Funds raised through Kidney Walk will directly support NKF’s local patient services, and education and research efforts.
Participation is free, but donations are encouraged. Everyone who raises a minimum of $100 will receive a commemorative walk T-shirt. Additional recognition gifts – including jackets – will be awarded for meeting various fundraising levels.
For more information, www.kidney.org. To register, volunteer or sponsor, go to www.kidneywalk.org or contact Nicole Scharf at 410-726-8732. To date, top sponsors of the Southern Delaware Kidney Walk include Beebe Healthcare, Christiana Care Health System, Nephrology Associates, Woody’s Dewey Beach and Dewey Beach Lions Club.
Kidney disease is the ninth leading cause of death in the United States, affecting 30 million adults. Approximately 2,500 Delawareans are on dialysis, and more than 450 Delawareans are on the organ transplant waiting list. Risk factors include diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity and family history.