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Stories

Walkathon Focus: Individual Effort for a Winning Strategy and Team

South County Senior Center Walkathon team members honoring Nicole's 2019 participation with a drawn "stand-in."South County Senior Center Walkathon team members honoring Nicole's 2019 participation with a drawn "stand-in."With the decision to host LifePath’s 28th annual Walkathon as a virtual event, we weren’t sure how our supporters might respond. I’d like to introduce you to one supporter who is operating full steam ahead. 

Meet Nicole. Her dedication to LifePath is evidenced in how she supports our agency as a member of LifePath’s Citizens Advisory Board (CAB) and that she chooses LifePath as her charity of choice, singing her support loud and clear during Walkathon season.

“I am an elder.  I am able-bodied.  I can help. I feel it is my responsibility to participate and do what I can to support LifePath. I may need the services in the future,” explains Nicole.

When she retired in 2012, embracing her age and a new chapter in her life, she began getting involved with the South County Senior Center. It was at that time that she was introduced to LifePath’s good work, and was happy to join the senior center’s walkathon team. She has been integral in the team having a winning streak in the “Most Money Raised by a Senior Center” and “Most Money Raised Overall.” Last year, though she had surgery scheduled for the same week as the event, she fundraised and had “stand-ins” walking for her on event day.  

I asked Nicole to share some of her “pro tips” for Walkathon fundraising. Here’s her strategic recipe for success:

  • Write your own message and include information about your personal experience and appreciation for LifePath. For instance, this year, Nicole has shared on her team page how she received Meals on Wheels for a time after she returned from the hospital after surgery.
  • Cast a wide net.  Nicole sends her message to everyone in her contacts because, she says, “You just never know who will respond.” She explains that LifePath is the only cause she asks for and only during Walkathon season. 
  • Follow up.  About three weeks after her initial contact she sends a reminder, just in case her contacts intended to donate but it slipped their mind. One last nudge happens close to the date of the Walkathon, only to those who donated before but who haven’t done so yet.  
  • Get personal. As soon as she is notified by LifePath of a donation she sends her own thank you email or note.
  • Report out. After the Walkathon, she sends an email reporting on the event and the total amount raised.

For new or returning fundraisers, we’d be happy to set up a personalized fundraising link so that you may ask friends and family for online donations. Once set up, the link may be shared through social media, email, or text. Donors give directly online and, because it's your personal or team link, your tally will increase before your very eyes!

Nicole’s plan on how to participate in the virtual event? “I am going to walk around my place. I am training now and people I meet (6 feet apart) ask me why I walk so much everyday. I tell them about the LifePath Walkathon.”

Nicole is aware of the many programs and services provided by LifePath and notes they are all important. She is a true cheerleader for LifePath because she identifies with our mission. “I am an elder. I am able-bodied. I can help. I feel it is my responsibility to participate and do what I can to support LifePath. I may need the services in the future,” explains Nicole.

We are all in this together. We are all responsible for one another. If you are an elder in need, reach out to LifePath by calling 413-773-5555, X1230 or 978-544-2259, X1230 or via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. If you can help, no matter your age, we welcome your efforts.