Press Release (ePRNews.com) - CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Sep 08, 2017 - In only its eighth year in Charlotte, N.C., the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation’s (UMDF) Energy for Life Walk is poised to cross the one million dollar fundraising mark. Considering that the national organization has funded over eleven million dollars in research grants, Charlotte’s role has been significant.
The walk, co-chaired by local mitochondrial disease parent, Jerry Yoder, Child & Family Development’s Susie Crain, and local caregiver and “mito” champion, Julie Freed, is set in Freedom Park on Saturday, October 14. Registration will begin at 8:30 AM, and the walk will begin at 10. It will include entertainment, activities, and a route peppered with signs about local mitochondrial disease patients and facts about mitochondrial disease.
“We expect at least 750 people to turn out,” says UMDF’s southeast regional coordinator, Margaret Moore, “Not only are there more than 150 families affected by the disease in the Charlotte area, but mitochondrial disease is also often an underlying condition or related to Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease), and even many cases of autism. Add that to the fact that many patients travel from all over the region to visit North Carolina’s largest children’s hospital here, and you have a lot of attention.”
UMDF itself is embarking on a nationwide project to help establish Mitochondrial Disease Centers of Excellence. “That’s where my focus is,” says 4-time walk co-chair, Jerry Yoder, “On bringing enough attention to mitochondrial disease in the Charlotte area that we are a viable candidate for a Center of Excellence right here.”
After raising one million dollars locally through the Energy for Life Walk, the region might be ready for just that. For more information about the walk, please visit www.energyforlifewalk.org/charlotte.
About Mitochondrial Disease
Every 30 minutes, a child is born who will develop a mitochondrial disease by age 10. Mitochondrial diseases result from the failure of the mitochondria, which is a located in the cells of our bodies. Mitochondria are responsible for creating more than 90% of the energy needed to sustain life and support growth. When mitochondria fail, less energy is produced causing cell injury or cell death. On a larger scale, organ systems begin to fail. The disease is often debilitating. Children with mitochondrial disease may not see their teenage years.
About the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation
Founded in 1996, the UMDF (http://www.umdf.org) works to promote research and education for the diagnosis, treatment and cure of mitochondrial diseases and to provide support for affected individuals and families. Since its inception, the UMDF has funded nearly $6 million in research, making it the leading non-governmental contributor of grants focused solely on mitochondrial disease. The UMDF, based in Pittsburgh, is a national organization, represented by 14 chapters around the United States and thousands of members who participate in groups and as ambassadors.
United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation