WEST ALEXANDRIA — The first annual Arthrogryposis Walk took place in West Alexandria on Sunday, Aug. 3. Over 80 participants walked in hopes of raising awareness for Arthrogryposis.
According to arthrogryposis.net, Arthrogryposis multiplex congenita (AMC), is a neuro-musculo-skeletal disorder that affects various joints in the body. The joints in the body show contractures, stiffness, poor mobility or immobility and muscle fatigue. Symptoms of Arthrogryposis are: restricted joint mobility or joint immobility, along with muscle weakness. In most cases, the arms and legs are most affected, weakness in muscles (muscles may be emaciated or may even be missing altogether,) hip joints may be displaced, and in some causes facial deformities, anomalies of the spinal cord, respiratory and cardiac disorders, abnormality of the genital tract, and skin impairment are also seen.
There is no medical cure for arthrogryposis. Individuals with arthrogryposis may receive occupational, speech and physical therapy, castings or braces of spine, hands and feet, and different surgeries.
Girl Scout Troop 39018, out of West Alexandria, was looking to earn their bronze award. Troop members Katelyn Wright, Allison Class, Madison Hundley, Brianna Henemyre, Shaila Heil, Lynnlee Voge Arianna Bland, and their leaders Tabatha Class and Joaney Meyers learned that one of the members had a nephew with Arthrogryposis. Not knowing exactly what AMC meant, the girls researched the medical term and made a plan.
The girls decided to hold a walk in honor of Wright’s nephew, Owen Melvin, to help raise awareness of his condition and to raise some money for the AMC organization.
People from West Alexandria to Cincinnati came to participate, learn, and donate money to the organization. The troop set up an educational center to educate walkers about AMC. The girls sold shirts and bracelets in honor of Melvin and donated all the proceeds to the organization. Their efforts raised over $1,400 to give to the AMC organization in honor of Melvin.
The girls would like to give a special thanks to Derick Meyers for designing the shirts, Andrea Thompson and her team from FIW for making the shirts so quickly and at a great price, and all participants who came and walked, supported or donated to the cause. The troop plans to make this a yearly event.