Muscular dystrophy is a disease that affects the brain and muscles cells of the affected people. People with this disease do not have typical amounts of energy present in their bodies. To acquire the missing energy, the disease causes the affecter’s bodies to steal the energy from either the brain or muscle cells. Depending on the type, the affected person could either have mental disabilities from the affected brain cells, muscle deterioration from the affected muscle cells, or in some cases, both. Alivia Darty, a junior at Walker, has personal experience with the disease and with the MDA camp for affected children.
What is the camp?
It is a week long summer camp that is specialized for MD patients. It accommodates for children with special equipment to help them have the normal summer camp experience they never thought they could have. The camp is held in Jackson’s Gap Alabama near Auburn at camp ASCCA for only one week out of the summer every year. The campers are able to participate in many typical summer camp activities, just with a little more assistance. Each camper has an individual counselor to help them with their needs. The campers have the choices of horseback riding, zip lining, swimming, archery, inner tubing, fishing, and golfing. They also have a talent show and dance during the week.
How did Walker High School raise money?
Anchor Club, Beta Club, and Student Council members participated in fundraising activities to raise money for MDA camp held in Jackson’s Gap. Anchor Club and Beta Club raised money by collecting individual donations by club members. The Student Council sold “mobiles” for one dollar each. Walker raised a total of $1,200. $800 of the money raised will be used to send a child to camp, and the remaining $400 will be used for research. Walker won “Highest Fundraising School” statewide, and was recognized at a state dinner where they presented the school with an award.
What is your personal experience with the camp?
Alivia’s younger brother Wesley has been attending the camp for two years. His specific type of disease is Glycogen Storage disease type 3A. Alivia has also applied to be a counselor at the camp this summer. She says Wesley’s favorite activity at camp is zip lining. She also says most campers love the ability to actually be away from their parents and to spend a week away from home with other kids that they can relate to. The camp has doctors continuously on staff so the parents do not have to worry about their children’s safety.
The amount of money that is donated every year determines the number of campers that will be able to attend the camp that summer. Acceptance is based off the severity of the child’s disease and the child’s age. The total amount of money raised for the MDA Camp in Alabama this year is $25,000.
By: Kathryn Best