Mississippi Mills – August 30, 2021  By declaring Saturday, September 11th as Parkinson Canada SuperWalk Day, Christa Lowry, Mayor of Mississippi Mills and Warden of Lanark County has added her voice to those who have expressed increasing concern about the number of people in this area impacted by Parkinson’s Disease (PD). Both levels of government are expected to endorse her motions. The Proclamation acknowledges that PD is the fastest growing neurological condition in the world and recognizes that, per capita, Parkinson’s is more prevalent in Canada than most other countries in the world.

“It is through raising awareness and raising funds to advance vital research that we will be able to continue the fight against this debilitating disease,” says Mayor Lowry. “Participating in, volunteering for, or donating to the SuperWalk are all ways we can show our communities’ support to those friends and neighbours who are affected by this disease.”

Parkinson’s is a progressive neurological disease caused by the reduction of dopamine in the brain. Symptoms do not appear until later and scientists are currently trying to identify biomarkers that will lead to earlier diagnosis and more tailored treatments. In addition to movement issues such as tremors, balance, gait and posture, many Parkinson’s symptoms are not well-known. Apathy, depression, constipation, sleep disorders and loss of smell are some non-motor examples. The average age of diagnosis is 60 but up to 20% are under 50 years of age. It is possible to have a good to great quality of life especially if there is early diagnosis. Exercise is now considered an important part of treatment.

Pat Evans, who co-chairs the SuperWalk with Gayle Truman, is encouraged by Mayor Lowry’s support, along with the support from the other municipalities who have already made Proclamations. “By talking about the problem, you are providing hope to those who have been diagnosed, encouraged others to get diagnosed and lessened the stigma associated with having PD.” says Pat. “This year marks the 5th year of the SuperWalk in Lanark North Leeds. Since 2017, we have seen the positive impact of early diagnosis, exercise, education and support. It makes a “big difference,” she points out, “but we need funds to build up community supports. Please help us to ensure that no one has to be alone on this journey.”

To register and raise funds visit http://donate.parkinson.ca/lanarknorthleeds

Contact:    

Pat Evans: evans.patn@gmail.com

Courtney Willis: courtney.willis@parkinson.ca