Etcetera - 05/20/10

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Children's Home Society of Washington raised $6,200 for a local child abuse prevention program, said Kelly Bray, marketing communications manager.

On April 10, Children's Home Society of Washington and WalMart Associate Volunteer Program 2476 co-sponsored the community-wide Relay for Hope "Walk Away Child Abuse" event to support the prevention of child abuse and spread awareness that a strong family supports the development of healthy children.

All proceeds will benefit the HomeTeam Parent Aide Program, a partnership with the Exchange Club of Walla Walla and CHSW.

Held at Borleske Stadium, the walk drew 100 community members, 47 of whom were children. Youngsters enjoyed the Kid Olympics, gunny sack races and football toss, Kelly said. Beginners Mind Martial Arts, a local martial arts school, gave a demonstration for the kids.

The family of Tara and Keith Crain, Jeromy Kerby, Kayla Crain and Brie Green, had such a strong passion for child abuse prevention that they walked seven miles, or 28 laps around the track.

Sixty-eight WalMart associates volunteered more than 400 hours for the Relay for Hop. In recognition of their volunteer hours, WalMart Foundation donated $5,000 to support child abuse prevention. The event raised an additional $1,200 dollars in registration fees and food sales.

The Seattle Pacific University 2010 winter quarter dean's list includes Kira Louise Hendricksen of Dayton. Students on the dean's list have completed at least 12 credits and attained a 3.50 or higher grade point average.

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A 30-plus year Milton-Freewater resident, Cuco suffered a stroke at age 30, which resulted in mental and physical damage. His physician prescribed aqua therapy in the Y's warm-water pools and so he began working on recovery seven years ago.

The YMCA staff also looked for alternate methods to address his physical limitations. Former Y staffer Tom Keller noticed Cuco's diligence and trained him on the weight machines. Tom said Cuco was " ... a pleasure to help because he works so hard."

Fiercely independent, Cuco has been fighting his way back to health ever since the stroke. He also enjoys helping others.

"God has helped me so much through the YMCA that is why I thank God for all the help and opportunities."

He reaches out to people beyond awareness with his kind heart. He credits staff members for assessing his needs and constantly moving him forward.

"The Y helps in two ways, mentally and physically. I will never surrender my hopes."

The YMCA strives to reach out to people in need of the mind, body and spirit connection.

Etcetera appears in daily and Sunday editions. Annie Charnley Eveland can be reached at annieeveland@wwub.com or afternoons at 526-8313.

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