Volunteers are an invaluable part of the ALS Association team. Whether it’s providing patient support, lending a hand at events, or helping out in the office, their work and dedication is deeply appreciated. Each volunteer has their own reason for getting involved that is unique to them. In an effort to share their stories, here are insights from some of our volunteers.
By Josh Rogers, Senior Vice President & Partner, FleishmanHillard
A few weekends ago, I was jogging past Steinberg Rink in Forest Park and I remembered the first Walk to Defeat ALS® that I attended. The Walk started and finished at Steinberg. That was 2005 or 2006, I think. I participated in two Walks at Steinberg. Then the event shifted to the Forest Park Visitor’s Center. And this year, we’re moving again to the upper Muny parking lot.
Each location to date has served us very well as the event has grown. And I know our new spot will be great too. Forest Park is such a wonderful institution … it’s impossible to go wrong with an event in the park.
ALS Association volunteers are a special breed of superhero — they are the heart and soul of this Chapter. They give up countless hours of their personal time to provide us with all manner of help – in the office, in the homes of people living with ALS, on our board of directors, as public policy advocates, on our committees, at our special events – without asking for anything in return.
So many of our volunteers have been personally impacted by ALS, and have seen up close and personal the devastation the disease brings upon a family. These wonderful people become volunteers to fight for a cure and to ensure that other families are supported physically and emotionally on their disease journey.
Two of those special volunteers are Don and Claire Bratcher, who have been ALS warriors and volunteers for close to 15 years. Claire recently agreed to share their story and we’re delighted to post it here in her own words.