When Hannah’s mum was diagnosed with Parkinson’s earlier this year, she decided, along with her family, to educate herself and the people around them about the disease, and to raise awareness and funds to make a difference.
Hannah created a ticketed event called ‘Pound The Pavement For Parkinson’s’, which included a walk/run from Seacliff to Glenelg/Brighton and back. They also had raffle tickets with prizes to be won, silent auctions and a fun day all round. The event was a huge success, raising over $19,000 for Shake It Up to fund ground-breaking Parkinson’s research! We spoke to Hannah about what was involved in creating her fundraiser event, and her advice for others wanting to make a difference.
Hi Hannah, tell us all about your Pound the Pavements for Parkinson’s Event! How did you come up with the idea?
I started off brainstorming some ideas. I knew I wanted to do something that involved moving the body but I wanted to make more of an impact and do something that brought everyone together for all to enjoy. So I came up with the idea to do a walk/run with food and festivities afterwards, such as raffles, silent auctions and live auctions. Which lead me to the name “Pound The Pavement For Parkinson’s”!
What was involved in organising the event?
I spent most nights and weekends planning, doing lot of emailing and contacting businesses to support my event. It involved securing the space to hold the event, setting up a Facebook event page and a page to purchase tickets from. Planning how the day would run and all the set up. I ended up selling 142 tickets and had over 50 businesses who donated and supported Pound The Pavement For Parkinson’s. It was honestly amazing! There was a lot of work involved but so incredibly worth it!
What were some of the biggest highlights from the day?
I would have to say having the big group photo out the front by the beach with everyone happy and excited and ready to give the walk/run a go was the biggest highlight! I don’t think there were many people that didn’t at least walk to the halfway mark and back. It was amazing! Also I was really touched by meeting a big group of people who bought tickets who I didn’t know. They told me their father has Parkinson’s and they were always looking for fundraisers in SA and could never find any, so when they came across mine they signed up straight away. I can’t go past the live auctions too, which were just so much fun for everyone. I had two real estate agents as auctioneers and they were great at getting the crowd involved! Lastly of course seeing the big smile on my mum’s face!
What drives your commitment to fundraise for Parkinson’s?
My mum, who was diagnosed earlier this year. It was a big shock for us all. I can say honestly that me and my family really didn’t know a lot about the disease so it was important to me to not only raise funds but to spread awareness! It is so much more common than what I had first believed, I’ve had so many people reach out to me since I started the fundraiser saying their family member or friend has Parkinson’s. It opened my eyes up to how important organisations like Shake It Up are and how we can all play a part to help where we can.
Why did you choose to raise funds for Shake It Up Australia?
I chose Shake It Up Australia because 100% of the funds raised go straight to cutting-edge research for Parkinson’s. I also liked that Shake It Up is partnered with the Michael J Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research which puts a great spotlight on the disease. I was appreciative of the support and encouragement I received from Isobel, the Shake It Up fundraising manager, and the Foundation.
What words of advice do you have for others hoping to make a difference for Parkinson’s?
Decide what your goals are, leave time for planning and go for it. Anything you can do – big or small – counts!