April is Parkinson’s Awareness Month. How many of you know what Parkinson’s is? Yeah, I know, most of you are far more acquainted than you would like to be but this is the question that I pose at the outset of many of my speeches, that is, right after the audition video Tim Jr. and I put together for The Amazing Race Canada. The audition video is of two brown men in the snow with nothing on other than stocking caps, scarves and boxer shorts. Once I have the crowds attention I launch into a discussion of what Parkinson’s is: VIEW HERE. It is my way of introducing a difficult subject with some lighthearted humour.
With this blog I want to highlight some of the things being done by individuals all over North America in an attempt to lighten the burden of Parkinson’s. These are just a few of the individual’s in the world who are striving to help those of us with Parkinson’s ‘Live Your Best’.
Jenna Sigurdson’s ‘Toonies for Tulips’ is a heart warming endeavour led by my good friend Blair Sigurdson’s daughter. At 14 years old Jenna is a dedicated advocate for Parkinson’s having raised in excess of $40,000 over the last four years. When Jenna’s dad, Blair, was diagnosed with Young Onset Parkinson’s she set out on a goal to raise awareness and funds for research into a cure for the disease. She has year after year led the pack in fundraising for the annual Manitoba Super Walk. If you live in Manitoba and would like to help her out you can pick up her ‘Toonies for Tulips’ book mark at all Winnipeg Co-op Food stores and gas bars. Jenna continues to inspire!
Tim Hague Jr.’s ‘Wingin’ It for Parkinson’s’ was held in Fredericton, New Brunswick and raised just shy of $7000.00 in one night! Wow! There are not words enough to say how proud I am of this individual (ok, ok, disclaimer: he is my son!) We had a fabulous time together watching 12 teams race through a beer and chicken wing eating contest. It was so much fun we are going to make it an annual event and hold one in Winnipeg next year. All the funds raised went to the Parkinson’s Society Maritime Region. An amazing ‘Thank You!’ goes out to all the volunteers who help make the evening such a huge success!
The 4th World Parkinson’s Congress will be held in Portland, Oregon September 20-23, 2016 with the goal of bringing together the brightest minds tackling Parkinson’s disease. Reports on cutting edge science along with leaders in the fields of research and patient care are combined with people living with Parkinson’s and their caregivers. It is a unique and inspiring setting! I would encourage you to mark your calendar and plan on attending this important congress. Once your calendar is marked start planning to Power Through to Portland! This is a unique opportunity to encourage physical activity and power your way to the congress virtually. Over the coming months you will be invited to join me and thousands of others to sign up and log each step taken, mile run or two step danced on your virtual trip to Portland. Stay tuned for more details! In the mean time here are a couple of videos to start stoking the fire with.
Young Onset Parkinson’s Exercise Program is held twice a week at the Reh-Fit Centre, Canada’s first medically certified fitness facility, in my home town Winnipeg. There are a number of us who collectively want to ease the burden of Parkinson’s by encouraging the #1 medicine for Parkinson’s; physical activity. We’ve seen over and over the benefits of physical activity both in the physical realm as well as the psychological. We remain committed to helping those living with this disease through exercise. If you live in the Winnipeg area I would encourage you to come out and join us! Our next session begins April 27th. The group is focused on Young Onset but anyone is welcome to attend. Click the Reh-Fit logo above for more details.
There are so many good people working very hard to ease the burden of Parkinson’s and find a cure. I would like to send my personal thanks to all those who volunteer, contribute and care for us with this disease. The time and compassion that so many give is deeply appreciated!
As we focus together on Parkinson’s this month lets collectively choose to ‘Live Your Best’! Have the strength to do your best today, be courageous in accepting what your best produces and then have the will to persevere. I am convinced that when we choose to live our best we will be amazed at how far our best will take us! It’s spring, the sun has risen, it’s a beautiful morning and I think it’s time for a walk will you join me?
Strength & Courage
Tim Hague Sr. is an author, internationally sought after professional speaker and Winner of The Amazing Race Canada season #1. Tim was diagnosed with Young Onset Parkinson’s Disease at the age of 46. He hails from Winnipeg Canada where he resides with his wife and children. For event bookings or to learn more about Tim go to www.TimSr.ca.