FSR is hosting our fifth annual Team KISS 5K Run/Walk in Atlanta, GA this year. This event helps raise awareness about sarcoidosis while also fundraising for critical research and patient support programs. But the event is more than just a walk- it’s a movement. We work with volunteers from all across the globe to help them start their own independent Team KISS walks that correspond with our event in April, Sarcoidosis Awareness Month. We even have a virtual walk option, where you can join in on the fun (and still nab a Team KISS t-shirt) even if you’re unable to attend an event in person! This way, sarc warriors and their loved ones from all corners of the US and abroad can join us as we Kick In to Stop Sarcoidosis!

This year, we’re highlighting some of our super awesome independent walks, like the Westchester Walk n Roll! This event and team has already raised over $1,000 for sarcoidosis research!

Read more about their event on April 8th below!

Everyone knows that it’s not easy living with sarcoidosis. I take that back. Hardly anyone knows. In fact, most people have never even heard of it, and don’t understand when we try to explain (the most common response is “at least it’s not cancer”). That just makes it even harder for us to get through life with this disease. It can make us feel so alone.

I know it was like that for me. After years of bouncing from doctor to doctor, being dismissed and disregarded with no diagnosis (“maybe you’re just depressed”) or just the wrong diagnosis and a series of treatments that didn’t help, I was finally diagnosed with sarcoidosis in late 2015. I’d looked up everything I could online, and spoken with dozens of doctors, but I never actually met anyone with my disease … until I attended a Sarcoidosis Awareness Walk. There was an instant connection, an instant bond with the people I met there, and we have stayed in touch since that day … but that walk was 2 hours away from where I live. There was nothing – and no one that I knew of – closer to me.

That’s why I’ve started the KISS Westchester Sarcoidosis Walk ‘n’ Roll, and I hope you’ll join me. The event is in Mamaroneck (map/directions), but has drawn participants from all over Westchester, NYC, and some areas of Connecticut. It’s a chance for us to come together as a community to know that we are not alone in this fight, a chance for us to raise awareness about this disease, and a chance to raise funds for research towards better treatments and someday, a cure. There’s no set distance: we’re on a track, so you can walk (or roll) as much or as little as you’re able. The important thing is to be there.

You can register here, and join us on Facebook for the latest updates. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me at AmbassadorKerryW@stopsarcoidosis.org at any time.