Updated: Jan 8
VT Seva Dallas conducted its 10th annual Cancer Walkathon, where participants walk every October to increase awareness of Cervical Cancer. With the unprecedented times this year the event was unique as it was conducted virtually. Every year we would have 5K - 10K walk but this year we had an unprecedented accomplishment of walking about 20,000 miles, putting in the order to double our goal of 10,000 miles walked!
What is the primary Goal ?
Spread awareness on different types of cancer and aid globally with prevention. This year awareness for Cervical Cancer was the main goal, as about 300,000 women in 2018 alone suffered and died from this disease.
How is the cause supported?
Over the last ten years, VT Seva Dallas has raised funds to support women in need and organize health screening camps in remote villages of India. Thus far we have made a difference by conducting 200 camps which have screened more than 50,000 individuals. Funds raised are also used to support procure infrastructure such as mobile diagnostic bus, digital colposcopes, screening kits, blood cell counting equipment and many more to support the camps. To help improve and procure more we have successfully raised 100,000 USD from the 2020 Walkathon.
By the end of our 10th annual walkathons, we have more than 3,000 people engaged who strived to express their solidarity in the fight against cancer; there’s truly no words for the dedication and perseverance with which our participants walked, bringing forth an astounding total of about 30,000 miles!! To everyone’s delight, the visionary founder and CEO of VT Seva, Sri Chinna Jeeyar Swamiji, participated in the event with his run on October 22nd and encouraged us in our fight against cancer as part of this 10th anniversary milestone.
What were the categories & who are the winners?
All participants were divided into 3 categories as Men, Women and our four legged friends.
In order to track said progress of the participants, VT Seva actually created a website in which they can log the respective miles walked and compete with each other for the most miles walked. We’ve had many winners that showed impressive drive and motivation and helped make this event a tremendous success!
Men's Category Winners:
Papaiahgari Vishnuvardhan - 515.14 miles
Jagan Siva - 331.71 miles
Poosarla GeethaPrasad – 275.72 miles
Women's category Winners:
Peechara Shobha – 363.57 miles
Koduri SriGowri – 328.52 miles
Shreya – 272.77 miles
Four Legged Family:
Cooper (Pet Dog of Shreya and Srivas) – 272.9 miles
Julie (Pet Dog of Sriram and Lakshman) – 105.2 miles
Arjun (Pet Dog of Radhika and SriNitya) – 28.5 miles
All the winners received an amazing virtual medal to celebrate their accomplishments. These virtual medals were created by Aditi.
Experience of winners in their own words
Vishnuvardhan: “I walked in the memory of my uncle Kamatam Ramakrishna Reddy, who inspired me to be selfless and “Serve all Beings as a Service to God”. I also walked for Aparna Akka as she could not walk as much as she really wanted due to a foot injury. I walked in support of VT Seva’s for all the great work they do in keeping the general health of the women via cancer awareness programs. Jai Srimannarayana!”
Sivaji: “I have always been empathetic towards cancer patients and as soon I was told by the VT team about the Walkathon and its purpose of increasing awareness of Cervical cancer, I was very happy to be part of this great cause. Though I usually walk a couple times a week for my personal fitness, this noble cause did encourage me to go extra miles every day for the past month. I would like to thank the VT Seva team wholeheartedly for organizing such a great event.”
GeetaPrasad: “I am from Cary, NC. As part of my Engineering college Fitness group came to know about VT Seva virtual walkathon and wanted to be part of this great cause and contribute from my end. Wishing the very best for all your initiatives and truly inspiring work.”
Shoba: “I dedicate this walk to my mother who passed away due to cancer. I love walking and I feel very happy going out and enjoying nature. I was motivated to walk almost 30 years ago when I watched the movie “Aswani”, a biopic of Aswini Nachappa, a famous runner from India. I have been supporting VT Seva activities for the past few years. Inspired by VT Seva services, I sponsored a few cancer screening camps through VT Seva. Congratulations to VT Seva on its 10th anniversary.”
Gowri: “Many thanks to VT Seva for providing this opportunity- 30-day journey to become my healthiest self while running for a cause I believe in. It all started with a GOAL. At first, I set myself a goal of 150 miles!! Gradually I realized I could do more and increased it to 250. I am Passionate about VT Seva – I have been volunteering with VT Seva from 2008. I have personally participated in the Women Healthcare camp (Cancer Screening camp) in India.”
Shreya: “I want to thank VTSeva for holding a Virtual Cancer Walkathon this year! I really appreciated the opportunity to once again support VTSeva as well as compete with others. I would like to give a big shout out to my brother as he would skateboard while I walked and my dog for constantly reminding me that it is time for me to walk. Thank you VTSeva for hosting this event and making it an experience anyone can enjoy!”
6 Helpful tips that the winners followed to increase their step count:
To set a routine and follow it every day to stay consistent with your steps.
Walk/Run with a podcast if you usually can’t walk/run for long.
Walk/Run with a group to push yourself to run more.
Don’t run on a full stomach, otherwise you will feel some discomfort when walking/running and you won’t be able to walk as much.
Most Importantly, Have Fun! When you do it with a good mindset even the longest walks will feel short.
A Bonus Tip: If you do have pets, try to make it a fun filled walk, by having them come along with you.
Throughout the ten annual walkathons, the importance of healthy lifestyle choices in preventing cancer was accentuated by oncologists offering their valuable and impactful insight. Additionally, hundreds of VT Seva's youth demonstrated active leadership and participation by working to contribute towards research, presentation, and spreading information with teamwork and philanthropy in mind; they made the process more enjoyable and motivating for those walking and steadily making progress.
The milestone was a huge celebration as 10 annual walkathons involved numerous events and talks from popular oncologists to spread awareness and our Dallas volunteers raising money towards research and prevention of Cervical Cancer every year.
The culmination of the month-long walkathon was conducted with a virtual event fun filled event with our branch director, Priyatham ji welcome note, followed by our your emcees talking about health care pillar achievements in the USA year 2020. Dallas health director Ranga Manthena ji provided the history of the 10 years of Walkathons in Dallas.
Special interview was conducted by Padama ji with Madhavi Ravindra ji (below), who is the head for leading cancer camps in India. Fun activities were also conducted by the youth board to engage the audience. Finally, VT Seva invited the Education Director Phani ji to talk about the education pillar and the impact that we have on it, as well as announce our next Tarangini (VT Seva Dallas Annual Event).
All of this was possible because of the hardworking youth volunteers like Shreya , Aditi, Lashman, Pranamya, Sriram, Trisha, Arnav and Nikhilesh. The youth team member Trisha also created a parody about walking and it's benefits, you can listen to the same here The Link to the Parody. Youth board also created infographics as below to socialize
10th Annual Cancer Walkathon has been a huge hit! The event was successful in raising awareness for cancer and motivate many to help save many lives by their wonderful donations. We would like to thank you all for your help and support towards this nobel cause. It’s greatly appreciated!
We would like to also thank our youth board members for all their efforts and contributions in making this event a great success. Few members pics below
Thank you for taking time and reading!!
Keep walking and stay healthy !!
Did you know you can host a camp