Jefferson Primary School’s first ever “Walk to End Alzheimer’s” was a success by any measure as the initiative spearheaded by the third grade leadership team raised awareness of a terrible disease along with funding to help those suffering from it and the people caring for them.
Students walked countless laps around Jefferson’s traffic circle while a DJ played music and cheerleaders kept spirits high with handmade signs offering encouragement.
Third grade leadership team faculty advisors, Dr. Kathleen Ozimkowski and Julie Dooher and the youngsters who comprise the team worked hard to make last Friday’s walk something that everyone there will long remember.
“Alzheimer's is a type of dementia that affects memory, thinking and behavior,” according to the Alzheimer’s Association. “Symptoms eventually grow severe enough to interfere with daily tasks.”
It’s estimated that 6.5 million Americans are currently living with Alzheimer’s disease. The figure is expected to double to 13 million by 2050.
Students that chose to participate in the event marched around the traffic circle for 30 minutes. The various grade levels in the building were schedule at different times of the morning and afternoon to provide everyone with plenty of room. The cheerleaders were a constant presence and they seemed to take delight in their responsibilities.
Jefferson Principal Valerie Capitulo-Saide did her best to keep everyone highly motivated, cheering on the walkers. Superintendent James W. Polansky stopped by to provide inspiration and to marvel at the energetic youngsters participating in a very special project.