Monday 2 May 2016

A Walkathon for Visually Impaired People in Mississauga's Hazel 5Km Event

Getting ready at 105 Gibson Centre
We could not have asked for a better day like yesterday to do our 5Km walk.

It was a beautiful day with temperature at around 10 degrees C and a clear sky.
A physiotherapist volunteered her time to take care of participants

We met with our group- Joy Beyond Vision Community - at the Cultural Cafe shortly after 1:00p.m at the 105 Gibson Centre.

There were a few people already there picking up T- shirts, discussing directions and getting ready for the walk/ run.

Someone got injured a few weeks ago and a physiotherapist was there offering free service to help anyone who needed it before the event.

Everyone was getting excited!

Pastor Danny and his team organized and encouraged members of  the Joy Beyond Vision Community group to take part in the event.

There were ten visually impaired people taking part in the 5km walk!

Many volunteered offered their help to the VIP's ( Vision Impaired People)

For each runner, there were two volunteers with normal vision supporting them before and during the event.

Warming up for the  5km Walk!

Participants and volunteers were at the Gibson Centre chatting, encouraging each other and taking pictures.
There was an air of excitement at the Cultural Cafe. Everybody was excited about this event!

Going to Mississauga!

A school bus picked up everybody  including the runners, helpers and some family members who were there to cheer on their loved ones.

The school bus took us to the Carmen Carbassan Community Centre in Mississauga, Ontario, about half an hour drive from Toronto.

Shuttle buses taking the runners/ walkers to the starting point of their routes

We were dropped off at the community centre's parking lot, and boarded a shuttle bus taking us 
to the 5Km run starting point at Front St. and Lakeshore Drive in Mississauga.

People waiting and taking picture before the run

After about a 15 - 20 minutes' ride, we were at the 5K starting point.

Participants were of different ages and diverse background

There were a lot of people, young and old. Everyone was in a good mood, excited to get started.

VIPs warming up at the Mississauga site

Canada is a multi-cultural country and we pride ourselves of our diversity.

The participants in the Mississauga sports event reflected the Canadian spirit.

Participants from the Joy Beyond Vision Community and their volunteers in the Mississauga sports event

People from all different background, abilities, ethnic groups were here together for one purpose.

We were all there to participate in a sport event and raise fund for a good cause!

It was a lot of fun being with so many people and
waiting for the run/ walk to start.

Some people did a marathon while some ran/ walked a 10 Km route or did the 5km route.

A blind runner being guided by his/her helper

The event was an inclusive event as it was designed to include people with various ability levels.

People getting ready and doing their warm up exercises

Some warmed up by working on the rowing machines

With popular and inspiring music playing, runners/ walkers did warm up exercises to get themselves ready.

Some prepared themselves on the rowing machines set up on site.

After we sang O Canada, and right on the starting time. all the participants started their run/ walk!

The entire route was well marked 

The route was well marked out with clear big signs leading us towards the right direction.

We passed by beautiful scenery during our walk/ run event!

We passed by the Port Credit Habour, beautiful scenery and residential areas with beautiful homes fronting the lake!!!

\VIP's and their helpers running/ walking side by side

The vision impaired runners were doing very well, enjoying the event and were able to keep up with other participants.

It felt great as we saw the crowd lining the final stretch of the route near the finished line!

Reaching the finished line

As we were heading towards the finished line and unbeknownst to us,  our arrivals were captured on video by Sports Stat.

A food and water station at the finished area to refuel the participants

 After entering the finished area, each runner/ walker was given a aluminum foil blanket, water, cookies, bananas, pita rounds, and energy bars.

There were  a number of tents set up; some volunteers gave  out free food and souvenirs. But we were attracted to the tent with music and musicians performing.

One of the proud participants who finished the event!

It was quite a celebratory atmosphere!

Pastor Danny and Brian 

Participants were tired, but were jubilant as they had accomplished their goals and finished their routes.

I felt great as I saw the bright huge smiles from grin to grin on many of the faces from the Joy Beyond Vision Community group.

It was a great day for all who participated!


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