MS Walk kickoff

To kick off their annual Scarborough Walk, the MS Society of Canada held a gathering on March 1 at the Three Monkey’s Pub on Warden Ave.

The purpose of the event was to introduce fundraisers, sponsors and volunteers involved in this year’s walk to one another.

Co-ordinator for the Scarborough division Kyle Smith said that despite the economic downturn, they still hope to raise about $80,000 to aid the search for a cure for multiple sclerosis (MS), a disease that affects 55,000 to 75,000 Canadians.

Described by the MS Society as “unpredictable and disabling”, MS is a disease that affects the central nervous system.

“It can occur at any age and is usually diagnosed between the ages of 15 and 40,” Smith said.

Among the participants at this years kick off was Carol Thomson, top fundraiser for last year’s walk. Thomson, who has been living with MS for the last five years managed to raise over $4,000.

Thomson said the most effective way to raise money is teamwork, something she did not do on her first walk.

She added online fundraising can also be effective.

”Last year was the first time I ever tried on the Internet to raise money. For the people working at the office I just e-mailed around, because they were very busy. And so the money came in.”

This year the MS Scarborough Walk will take place at Cedarbrae Collegiate at Markham Road and Lawrence Avenue on April 19.

For information or to sign up for this year’s MS walk, visit or call toll free 1-800-268-7582.