North Lenoir High School HOSA, a student organization of future health professionals, earned first place in the School Team fundraising category at the fourth annual Lenoir County Alzheimer’s Memory Walk held April 28 at Fairfield Park in Kinston.
With the leadership of NLHS HOSA Advisors Kim Hipkiss, Teresa Eason and Tom Schwartz and Team Captains Morgan Hafenmaier and Hannah Weaver, the school raised $1,471.
Other schools participating included Lenoir County Early College, Kinston High School HOSA and South Lenoir High School HOSA. Each school had representatives who served on a planning committee that met weekly from January until April at Spring Arbor assisted living facility. Students either met at Spring Arbor or joined the meetings virtually.
“This experience was invaluable to the student participants in gaining valuable soft skill development and community service,” said Jessica Shimer, LCPS career development coordinator who serves in an advisor role each year, attending the meetings and event with the students.
Each school team was challenged to raise money in their school and community with planned activities and by seeking community donations. Schools participated in Spirit Nights at Chick-Fil-A and Sweet Frog Premium Frozen Yogurt. HOSA clubs invited other school groups, like the National Honor Society, to join the day of the Alzheimer’s Memory Walk to gain service hours and support the cause.
At present, more than 5 million people in the United States have Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias and someone new is added to those ranks every 66 seconds. Alzheimer’s is now the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. By 2050, experts predict there will be as many as 14 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s disease.
“Events like the Memory Walk raise awareness and needed funds to combat this disease. We are proud of our future health professionals and all Lenoir County students who participated,” Shimer said.