On October 16, 2010, my daughter and I volunteered at the DaVita® Fifth Annual Kidney Awareness Walk/Run held on the grounds of RFK Stadium in DC. Kidney Disease Awareness is a cause I am most passionate about. Several of my relatives, including my grandmother, have suffered from the disease. I am all too familiar with dialysis, donor registries, specialized diets, and kidney transplant education. Yet this event provided me with even more information about the disease and inspired me to get even more involved.
DaVita® estimates that about 31 million American adults—one out of six—have chronic kidney disease (CKD), and most of them don’t know it. Another 20 million Americans are at increased risk for the disease. Most people may not experience symptoms of CKD until the disease reaches an advanced stage. If CKD is left undetected, it can progress to kidney failure, with little or no warning. Early testing and detection are vital to preserve kidney health. Since I have a family history of chronic kidney disease, I decided to stop by one of the booths to take a rapid kidney disease screening provided by The Kidney TRUST.
DaVita® Kidney Awareness Walk/Run is held ten times each fall in eight states with thousands of devoted supporters donating time and money. On October 16, the strong winds and chilly weather didn’t deter those eager to finish the 3K run. DC Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton spoke during the opening ceremonies, congratulating the runners for their dedication to the cause. Adjacent to the starting gate were numerous booths with information about kidney disease, face painting, a moon bounce, and a kidney awareness trivia contest. My daughter and I enjoyed giving back to a worthy cause and plan to return next year.
For more information, go to www.kidneyawarenesstime.org/index.php