This Saturday, there will be two walks for two different cures. One will be in Reston, VA to benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. It's called Light The Night and it raises money for research on blood disorders and cancers. One of the really neat things about this walk is that it happens at night and everyone hangs on to a different colored balloon. Some are red, some are white, and some are gold. The first represents someone who supports the walk (with a red blood cell). The second is for someone who has been affected by cancer indirectly (with a white blood cell). The last is for people who have survived cancer (gold cell?). It creates a simulation of the blood stream as everyone marches with illuminated balloons.
Sadly I cannot attend this event because I have a conflict, but my scholarship group is going to have a team and I figure with the connections I have online, I should be able to do some good for them.
A walk I will be able to attend is on the very same day, in the morning. It's the AIDS Walk, which benefits the Whitman-Walker Clinic in DC. If you live in the DC area at all, you've probably heard of it before because of all the fantastic things they do for HIV/AIDS patients. The disease is one of the most debilitating ones out there and most of the treatments are almost as bad as the original symptoms. The clinic not only supports patients directly, but funding also goes to research for better treatments or possible cures. I WILL be attending this one with my community service fraternity (Alpha Phi Omega), but unfortunately I really can't spare the $15 for registration.
As a microbiologist, I really understand a lot of the science behind both of these disease groups. Viruses are remarkably hard to combat and without more funding, it will be a long time until we find true cures. Blood disorders are just as bad because their effects are systemic.
So here's how this matters to you. If you have 5 or 10 bucks laying around that wouldn't pull food out of your mouth if you spent them, consider giving to one or both of these great charities. Specifically I'd love to see 5 dollar donations to each from a whole lot of people. If you want to give more, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org, because I would really like to get a proper registration fee for AIDS walk.
For the Light The Night page, go here:
For the AIDS Walk page (updated link), go here:
If you give to one or both of these for my teams, let me know in the comments or via email and I'll make up a little post for all the donors. If you have a website/twitter/something like that, I'll put that up too! Let's use all this networking we have on the internet for some good. Thank you!