This year, Georgia 2-Day Walk for Breast Cancer Experience is going virtual. “Instead of walking 30 miles in 2 days, participants can join us for a virtual journey” Sept. 21-Oct. 4 for $35, the walk announced in a press release. This payment includes access to the event platform, credentials, a button and T-shirt.
Knowing that planning a large-scale walk was “wishful thinking … we pulled the trigger on a virtual event back in May,” said Whitney Pack Jones, It’s the Journey communications and marketing manager. “Once the decision was made by Atlanta not to hold large outdoor events, we knew we needed to pivot,” she said.
The fundraiser is partnering with a platform called MoveSpring, an app that is made for large events to be organized virtually. Each person can log in individually, which allows people to participate in the walk from anywhere in the world. Participants can use a tracking device like Fitbit or Apple Watch, or they can use the health app on their smart phones, the press release said. “Along the way, they’ll receive special messages from our traditional 2-Day Walk volunteers and sponsors, unlock ‘Milestones’ revealing Atlanta landmarks, and compete on our leaderboard for bragging rights,” the press release said.
At the moment, there are about 800 people registered for the walk, with hopes to increase that to over 1,000 participants.
Pack Jones said the 2-Day Walk has received great feedback from people about the decision to hold it virtually. “Right now it’s hard for people to make decisions and make plans. What we have felt and heard is people are appreciating others taking proactive action.”
She said the goal is still to hold a great event that raises money for organizations that help breast cancer patients. “Whatever decisions we have in order to try to facilitate that and do the best we can by those organizations is what we’re going to do,” she said. “Our participants recognize that and respect it.”
Pack Jones said that with the coronavirus pandemic, many cancer patients have lost their employer-provided healthcare along with their jobs, leading them to turn to other programs to get the diagnostics and treatment they need. “They need these assistance programs more than ever. We need the community’s support,” she said.
If people are unable to register, they can make a donation or provide a sponsorship at whatever level they’re capable. There are no fundraising minimum, but organizers request people fundraise to the extent they can “to help us fund our 2021 breast health and breast cancer grants for programs all throughout the state.”
For more information about the walk, visit www.itsthejourney.org/get-involved/.