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Great Strides, Great Stories

Each story in this series features a special person or team who played an integral role in the 2013 Great Strides walks. We hope you’ll find this story to be inspiring as we continue to make Great Strides in our efforts to find a cure for CF! 

April Waltz — Ava's Angels

Ava's AngelsWalk: Charlotte, NC walk held May 18, 2013
Chapter: Carolinas Chapter – Charlotte Office
Team: Ava’s Angels, led by April Waltz and her daughter Ava, 3, who has CF.
Impact: Raised over $10,000 in 2013

Why I Walk

Ava was four weeks old when she was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis. Prior to her diagnosis, I had never heard of CF. I did a google search for “cystic fibrosis” and after reading the first sentence, my life changed forever. I fell to my knees and just asked God to catch me and hold me.

Ava’s Angels was formed when Ava was just six months old.

What I'm Thankful For

Cystic fibrosis has taught me to look at the world differently. I’ve learned to live every minute to the fullest. All of those challenging moments have made me a stronger person. They’ve taught me to appreciate all of the happy moments life has to offer. I would not be the strong person I am today if it wasn’t for my husband, friends and family. Ava’s Angels is a joint effort and the accomplishments we’ve made have been made as a team.

Tips for Other Great Strides Teams

You have to take time to make your campaign personal — share a story that makes someone laugh or tugs at a heart string. When people make donations, write thank you letters explaining why the fundraiser means so much.

If you are fundraising via email, keep all emails informative but positive. Limit the number of emails you send out in your campaign so they don’t become repetitive. The first email is the most important, so really make it count. Remind people that this isn’t just about money; it’s about joining a community and working together for a common goal.

Also remember that people’s financial situations can change. It’s important to get people focused on the cause, not just the money. Get people in your community to feel passionate about the search for a cure. Every single dollar counts.

My Dream

Ava has a free spirit and I want her to nurture that. I want to be able to dare her to dream bigger. I want to see her live her dreams, regardless of how many she has, how they may change, or how challenging they may seem.

Form a Great Strides walk team today!

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Great Strides, Great Stories

Ava's Angels

Ava's Angels raised more than $10,000 in 2013 to help support the Foundation’s mission.

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