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CCC program making ‘Great Strides’ for cystic fibrosis research


GETAWAY — A few small steps can turn into great strides for a good cause.

That’s why the respiratory therapy program at Collins Career Center is hoping the community will join it in the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s annual Great Strides walk Wednesday.

Great Strides: Taking Steps to Cure Cystic Fibrosis is the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s largest national fundraising event. Tens of thousands of people have participated and in 2011, nearly $38 million was raised.

CF is a childhood disease that affects the lungs and digestive system. There is no cure.

This year marks the fourth year the CCC respiratory therapy program has hosted the event.

Tommy Weaver is the program director of the respiratory therapy program and has helped organize the event.

“Last year we raised $1,032,” Weaver said. “This year we’re hoping to exceed that.”

Weaver said anyone can participate in the walk, which goes around the CCC buildings. For a $5 donation, lunch is provided for the walkers.

For an additional $5, teams can participate in cornhole tournaments, wiffle ball and volleyball. Winners will split the pot.

All proceeds from the event will be donated to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

Since there is no cure for CF, Weaver said it is important to participate in walks like this one to raise money for research.

“I think the biggest importance is to be able to extend their lifespan,” Weaver said. He said the average lifespan of someone with CF is in their 30s.

The walk will be noon to 5 p.m. Wednesday at the CCC campus.