Huntington High School varsity and junior varsity field hockey players recently gave up a Saturday to participate in the CAH Awareness Walk at Heckscher State Park.
The Blue Devils walked in support of the family of one of the JV team’s players. The Huntington family organized the event, which was billed the First Annual New York CAH Awareness Walk with the CARES Foundation. Proceeds benefitted the work of the CARES Foundation.
Blue Devil field hockey players at the first annual CAH Awareness Walk at Heckscher State Park.
“Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia (CAH) is a family of inherited disorders affecting the adrenal glands,” according to the CARES Foundation. “The most common form is 21-hydroxylase deficiency, which is inherited in severe or mild forms. The severe form, called classical CAH, is usually detected in the newborn period or in early childhood. The milder form, called non-classical CAH (NCAH), may cause symptoms at any time from infancy through adulthood. NCAH is a much more common disorder than classical CAH. Fortunately, CAH can be managed with medication and, with adequate care, affected individuals go on to live normal lives. It affects males and females in equal numbers.”
Blue Devil field hockey coaches Kathy Wright, Allison Conlon and Ellyn Byrnes supported the event along with many players, most of whom were previously unaware of CAH and its effects.
CARES programs benefit more than 3,600 families and medical professionals across the United States and abroad, according to the organization, which is based in New Jersey. The CARES community represents every state in the United States and over 70 countries outside the US.
CARES Foundation programs include:
• Grants to qualifying researchers for better treatment, better understanding of the disease, and a cure
• One-on-one support for affected individuals and their families
• Educational materials and information for those living with the daily challenges of CAH
• Educational programs for individuals, and their families and health care professionals
• Comprehensive bi-annual newsletters
• Physician referral service
• Advocate for comprehensive newborn screening
• Advocate for appropriate emergency medical care
• Local support groups for affected individuals and their families
• Financial assistance for travel for families with a financial need for specialist care and to attend CARES sponsored events
The Blue Devil field hockey players and coaches walked away from the event feeling good about helping others, almost all of whom they will never be able to meet personally.