Hundreds walk for fight against AIDS
Published Sunday, September 20, 2009 11:55AM EDT
Supporters came out in droves Sunday morning to walk and raise money and awareness for the fight against AIDS.
The 17th annual Ca Marche AIDS Walk saw hundreds of people take to the streets for the seven-kilometre walk, organized by the Farha Foundation, Quebec's leading AIDS fundraising organization.
Some, like Gloria Griffith, walked in memory of friends and family.
"For my best friend Tony, who passed away many, many years ago. I've been walking now for 15 years," said Griffith, on hand at the event Sunday.
Others walked to support the cause.
People are dying every day because of AIDS...you don't have to know someone to want to make a difference," said first-time participant Ganeya Gajaram.
The annual walk, which this year began at Emilie-Gamelin Park, was started by the late Ron Farha before his death from AIDS in 1993.
"Ron was very much a people person. He loved to have fun and he loved to get people together and have parties and enjoy life," said Linda Farha, Ron's sister and volunteer president of the Farha Foundation.
Farha stepped down as president of Linda Lingerie, a multi-million-dollar company, to create the Farha Foundation, aiming to raise money and awareness for those suffering from AIDS.
"He wanted to make people know that this is a sickness they can prevent. All they need to do is to protect themselves," said Evelyn Farha, Ron's mother.
Farha didn't live to see the first fundraising walk that he organized, but since 1992, the Farha Foundation has donated over $7.3 million to some 45 AIDS organizations throughout Quebec.