Okay, our first Dine 4 Brain Aneurysm Awareness event at Friendly’s in South Portland, ME was a success, but not quite in the way we had thought. Yes, we raised money that will go directly to the Brain Aneurysm Foundation to raise money for research and education about brain aneurysms, and yes, we sold our T-shirts for the walk, and yes, we got a little more publicity for the KAT-Walk coming up in September, but it was the unexpected, random meetings with people that made it all worth while.
Although this particular Friendly’s is in a busy area of town, the number of people who didn’t even know about the event and just came by Friendlys for dinner or ice cream and had personal experience in some fashion with aneurysms, was amazing.
In fact, we found out during the course of the night that 3 employees at that particular Friendly’s branch had been effected by aneurysms or had relatives who had them. Some successes, some not.
Then, a woman from MA who was just there having dinner with her daughter came running up to the booth and said she just wanted us to know she had two annie’s clipped and thought we were doing a wonderful thing raising awareness. She went in to eat them came back out and chatted with us. We were all a little surprised she was unaware of the Brain Aneurysm Foundation, which is centered in MA and I don’t think her medical professionals did a very good job on educating her, but she’s still a survivor and it was wonderful to see her and share our stories.
The big “contact” we made was the head nurse of the neuro radiology OR at Maine Med. She knew my Dr. and spoke very highly of him. THEN she agreed to take a lot of literature and info, not only on the walk in Sept., but for aneurysm education in general, into her staff and area. She was more than willing to do it and apparently told Dave she’d try to get some folks together for the walk. We’ll see, but it’s great she was so receptive and open to doing things. That’s precisely what we were hoping to get. Dave has visited several hospitals and was never really sure if the advertising packets he’s been giving people were being used or displayed. All we can do is try at this point.
We sold a lot of t-shirts for the walk in September and took some names of people and had a nice dinner ourselves. The people at Friendly’s were great. They let us do whatever we wanted, so we set the tent up right outside their door and put some things inside at the PIck-Up counter and inside for people to read while they were waiting. We did take a few donations as well. One little girl came up and gave us a dollar. It was quite cute and another young girl just wanted to help and walk and give us her name.
I think we’ve done a good job of getting the word out there and lots of people are TELLING us they’re coming to the Kat-Walk in September, but we’ll see. I hope so. The more we can educate the public, we might be able
to save a life or at least help those who have already been effected by brain aneurysms. From our lips to God’s ear.