The 2017 Autism Speaks Walk in Partnership with SARRC theme “Powered by Love” could not be more appropriate for returning walk team, Team Blain. April and Brad Tucker started Team Blain in honor of their son Blain, who was diagnosed with autism at 3.5 years old.
Team Blain was inspired by the importance of family, friends, love and determination. Early on in their son’s diagnosis, SARRC, along with several local healthcare professionals, gave the Tuckers an understanding of how to navigate the next steps in their journey with autism.
Through creating a team for the Autism Speaks Walk in Partnership with SARRC, the Tuckers found a network of support that allowed them to raise awareness for their son, in addition to raising $14,000 that will help support other families impacted by autism.
“Every family affected by autism has a different experience and unique needs, however, we are all very similar in our journey,” April says.
Early on in their fundraising efforts, the Tuckers realized they couldn’t do it alone and attribute their 2016 fundraising successes to their dynamic network of family and friends.
For teams looking to boost their networks, April recommends concentrating on engaging family, friends and co-workers by sharing their personal story of why they may be involved with the walk event.
Additionally, a large part of Team Blain’s success relies on the creative fundraising efforts they’ve spearheaded. Last year, they held a fundraiser at a local restaurant that featured a raffle and silent auction. Donations included high-ticket items like movie tickets, autographed sports memorabilia and a beach cruiser. Their fundraiser garnered more than $5,000 in donations that they credited to Team Blain.
“It was so exciting to have had such a positive response from the community,” April says. She adds that Team Blain is already looking to top their 2016 numbers and that they are excited to host their second annual fundraising event.
“We plan on raising more, recruiting more, and supporting SARRC and our Autism Speaks chapter the best we can,” April says. “Team Blain truly embodies the energy and soul of what it is to walk with the power of love!
The 12th Annual Autism Speaks Walk in Partnership with SARRC is scheduled for Sunday, Oct. 29, 2017 at Tempe Beach Park. Register at autismspeakswalk.org
- 5K & 1-Mile Family Fun Route
- Family Fun Festival & Kid Zone
- Autism Resource Providers
- Sprouts Vendor Village
- Food Truck caravan