US RRT at Indianapolis Step Out Walk to Stop Diabetes
On August 27th 2016 at 6:00 AM the Indianapolis Rapid Relief Team (RRT) began setting up their tent and water stations at a local State Park, Celebration Plaza. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) had chosen this beautiful spot along the White River, close to the downtown district of Indianapolis, to host their 2016 Step Out – Walk to Stop Diabetes Event.
This year the ADA was celebrating their 25th Anniversary as they continued to lead the fight against diabetes. For years the Association has been funding indispensable research to prevent, cure and manage diabetes. They provide many services to improve the life of those living with the disease, such as a remarkable society of nearly 14,000 health care professionals providing the best treatments and care possible.
The volunteers were immediately recognized upon arrival and several of the staff began chanting RRT, RRT! The team of 10 volunteers worked along with other volunteers to set up the finish line station and a half way watering station with bananas, apples and water glasses. The RRT volunteer’s stations also had a team of medical students who provided first aid to those who needed it, and in their free time they assisted RRT with handing out the fruit and water. Thankfully there was only one instance of first aid needed and they were very quickly taken care of by the on-hand ambulance.
The first stage of the event started at 7:30 with lively music to ensure everyone was well awake. After registration each team had their photo taken and then enjoyed the different activities until 9:30, when the walk began. A local grocery store had a Health Pavilion which provided details on healthy eating, and to keep the children busy the American Senior Communities provided a Family Fun Zone. This year’s Family Fun Zone included a Silly Safaris Animal Show, Airbrush Tattoos, Balloon Twisting, and Bounce Houses. During this time the RRT volunteers handed out the water and fruit to keep everyone full of energy.
This Event gave the participants the option of walking 1.5 miles or 3 miles. The planned routes had picturesque views of the city along the White River. The 3-mile walk was simply planned to be a second loop of the same route, however, no one actually had a chance to do the second loop! About the time the first of the walkers hit the finish line, a thunder storm hit the event grounds and the event staff made the recommendation that the attendees “use their judgement” in getting to their vehicles.
The halfway water station had actually finished handing out the supplies and the last of the walkers had passed before the storm hit. They had successfully handed out all of the provided water and quickly shut down and headed back to the finish line to assist in the tear down.
As the attendees walked from the finish line to their vehicles, the volunteers stood along the path and handed out the last of the refreshments. The storm did hold off until almost everything was packed up, however not quite long enough, as the RRT volunteers left the event totally wet but still smiling!