“We first started walking just to find a way to help kids and people like Leah. It was somewhat on a whim and the first year was a little chaotic. However, we had so much fun and Leah loves the positive attention,” says Leah's mom, Caitlin.
The walk is how Caitlin first connected with EFMN, but Leah’s since been involved with the Shining Stars program for youth with epilepsy, and used a Seizure Smart Schools Classroom Kit to help educate her classmates on seizure first aid. Both programs are funded in part by the walk.
“The walk is important because it allows all of her supporters to get together in one place. Leah has two families, and so many friends that are like family, this is the one time of year we can all get together and support her as one."
In 2020, Hunter began reading to and teaching younger students about epilepsy, and helped organize a school-wide “Purple Day” that raised awareness and taught others how to respond to someone having a seizure.
In response to all the hard work Hunter did in raising epilepsy awareness and educating students, the student council surprised him with a school-wide Penny Wars challenge. It raised over $350 for his 2020 EFMN Neighborhood Walk team, Hunter’s Hope.
“I decided to raise awareness at school in case other kids, or someone in their family, has epilepsy. If someone wants to raise awareness and doesn’t know where to start, they should create a walk team,” says Hunter.
Epilepsy is what unites us, and together we will walk in solidarity for epilepsy.