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Participants who finish the Jim Cameron Memorial Walk will receive a T-shirt.
Chris Cameron's late husband was director of Lake Christian Ministries.
Friday, September 13, 2013
On Saturday, hundreds of walkers will meet at Smith Mountain Lake State Park for the second-annual Jim Cameron Memorial Walk.
Event co-chair Bart Matthies said that this year, he expects more than $50,000 — double last year’s figure — to be raised for Lake Christian Ministries.
Jim Cameron served as Lake Christian Ministries executive director from 2003 to 2010 and was known for his tireless efforts managing the day-to-day operations. Cameron, who died in 2011 at the age of 79, will be remembered for his dedication to those in need.
Matthies said that unlike some other walks, this one doesn’t charge a flat fee for participation. Participants start collecting pledges for their teams several weeks before the walk. If they pre-register in the numbers they did last year, LCM will collect about 80 percent of the funds before the event even begins.
In 20 12, 280 people pre-registered and another 60 registered the day of the walk. There were 40 teams with each walker raising an average of $75. Participants brought in $31,636. After expenses, LCM received $27,030.
“And for Moneta that’s pretty darn good,” Matthies said. “Quite a few people were blown away that we were able to collect so much money.”
This year, there was an increase in the amount of sponsor donations, which will help fund many area nonprofits that partner with the volunteer-run LCM.
Since 1992, LCM has been providing food, clothing and emergency financial aid to lake-area residents from Bedford, Franklin and Pittsylvania counties through those partnerships and a mobile food pantry.
Needy residents who earn 150 percent under the federal poverty guidelines can go to LCM and get furniture, food for about a week, clothing, and, once a year, receive financial aid to pay for eviction or utility-termination notices. Matthies said some people come to LCM because they can’t afford to have a tooth pulled or need help buying books for college or paying for their GED course.
LCM also partners with the Moneta Lions Club ; the club pays for most of the cost of new prescription and glasses for those who can’t afford it.
Matthies stressed the importance of having individual walkers bring in at least $75 in donations.
“For every 10 walkers, that’s $750 that we can save five people from getting their power cut off,” he said.
Members of several teams have signed up and started a fundraising competition among themselves. Some teams are small with two walkers, but others, such as First Colony Friends and Family out of Lynchburg, are expected to bring 40 walkers.
“It’s a lot of fun,” Matthies said. “The whole key to the event is it has to be fun for people to want to do it every year.”
For those who haven’t pre-registered, registration is at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, he said. The walk starts at 9:30 a.m. with a warm-up, prayer and brief presentation about Cameron.
Participants can decide that day to walk the 5K or 10K course. After the walk, participants will be treated to a free lunch at 11 a.m. and live music.
Carol “Chris” Cameron again will serve as honorary chairman in tribute to her late husband. She said she is looking forward to the walk and reminds anyone who wants to be involved that there’s still time to sign up.
“We’re hoping for a great turnout,” she said. “It honors Jim’s memory and the work he did at Lake Christian Ministries.”
For more information, contact Matthies at 912-9141 or Bill Daly at 797-4247.
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