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NAMI Walk in Golden Gate Park

NAMI Walk in Golden Gate Park

Although it was a fairly typical foggy morning in Golden Gate Park, my family arrived early bringing tea and bagels. Every year, we walk with all the other psychiatrists and their families from the Northern California Psychiatric Society. (My step-dad is next year’s President.) This year he organized our own team – consisting mostly of our family and those of other workers from Marin General Hospital. We collected our free NAMI (National Association for Mental Illness) t-shirts (because we each raised more than the $200 minimum sponsorship) and met with the rest of our team.

The park was full of women, men, and children of all ages wearing t-shirts to represent their teams – “Walking for Kaylee,” “If My Heart Were a Place,” and “Healing Hugs” were just a few of the 157 teams that gathered to raise funds and bring awareness to mental illness. However, this event wasn’t meant to be sad. In fact, the energy ran high as everyone listened to Grand Marshall Patty Duke and prepared to do warm-up jumping jacks before the walk. I even volunteered to go on stage and announce our team, Marin General Hospital “Bon Airs”, to over 1500 walkers and TV cameras. The walk itself always seems much shorter than 5K – on account of great company and conversation! It felt good to know that we contributed to the nearly $300,000 that NAMI raised this year. But most importantly, it felt good to know that every year we walk for such an important cause.

Thanks to all my friends at le•top for contributing to my fund raising goal this year! It was a great help. Please join NAMI Walks next year, May 2010, in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.”

For further information regarding the NAMI Walks in the San Francisco Bay Area, go to http://www.namiwalksfbay.org/.

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