September is a special month for the 100,000 Canadians living with Parkinson’s. It’s during that month that critical funds are raised at events across the country to support another year of research, advocacy efforts and programs and services for the Parkinson’s community.
October and November are also special months for Parkinson Canada as we eagerly read through your feedback from September’s fundraisers to better understand what was enjoyed and what can be improved upon. Your feedback is important to us, and we look forward to incorporating as much of it as we can into the 2023 event season.
The results are in
First, thank you to the 196 survey respondents who took the time to respond! Comprised of participants from across the country, each respondent was within a 50 km distance of their walk.
What is important at a SuperWalk?
We asked respondents to select all that apply among a series of factors that were important to them to see and experience at a SuperWalk.
- 61% said accessibility was important.
- 58% said being with the PD community was important.
- 52% of respondents said ease of registration was important.
- 51% said the location of the walk was important.
Note: Because of the ‘select all’ nature of the question, the following percentages equate to more than 100%.
Location, location, location!
Not only is location important to SuperWalkers, what they enjoyed about this year’s walks were the locations and the routes.
Respondents also enjoyed being back in-person. Virtual walks were popular and vital to the Parkinson’s cause during the pandemic. However, this year more community members were comfortable coming together to participate in SuperWalk. On top of enjoying the location of the walks, and being able to do so with the community, participates love knowing their presence helps to spread awareness of Parkinson’s in Canada and raise funds for those impacted by the cause.
If a survey doesn’t ask for areas of improvement, is it even a survey?
When asked what they’d like to see done differently next year, respondents said improving walk logistics, and having more event coordination staff onsite would be most helpful. Some also mentioned they’d like to see better Parkinson Canada representation to make clear which organization is receiving the funds raised. Others hinted at some ideas to spruce up the day of the event like having live entertainment.
Along with more volunteers onsite, better signage for the organization and decking out the event with giveaways and live entertainment, respondents also asked for more promotion of the event through more local stories of SuperWalkers in the area.
Speaking of which, if you have a story you’d like to share with us about your experience with SuperWalk, email email@example.com.
Did you know we have a fundraising recognition program?
66% of respondents weren’t familiar with Parkinson Canada’s fundraising recognition initiative that gifts fundraisers with Parkinson Canada SuperWalk merchandise as a thank you for your efforts.
What’s more, participants who raise more than $250 are entered into a draw for some awesome prizes. For instance, this year fundraisers were entered into a draw to win a two-night stay at the Westin Harbour Castle in Toronto, with dinner at Jack Astor’s, on top of the SuperWalk merchandise.
Walkers are coming out to support the cause year over year
When it comes to events, our aim will always be to grow SuperWalk to reach even more people with the important messages surrounding the state of Parkinson’s in Canada. With that, we try to understand how people heard of the event and who participates.
Nearly 58% of SuperWalkers knew about the event because they had walked in support of Canadians living with Parkinson’s before. Bearing witness to the recurring support of the Parkinson’s community, all while helping to raise awareness of the cause and fundraise for those impacted by it, is what keeps the Parkinson’s team motivated and committed to these events.
Only 14% of survey respondents said they learned about SuperWalk through another SuperWalker. Imagine if every SuperWalker invited three friends to join them next year, SuperWalk could level up! Extending invites to our networks is one simple way to grow the crowd and make more noise about the growing needs of Canadians living with Parkinson’s.
Next year, who will you invite to walk with you?
Be the change
We love the sense of community that SuperWalk fosters. Not only does participation in the walk help to raise critical funds for Canadians impacted by Parkinson’s, but it also brings the community together to remind Canadians living with Parkinson’s that they’re not alone and that the good things in life are still possible, like making memories with family and friends at a community walk.
As a non-profit organization, volunteers are the backbone of what makes all this possible.
Will you help make next year’s SuperWalk in your area the best it’s ever been? Whether you help on the planning committee, lend your time for some day-of volunteering, or share your story with us, our joint efforts can help take SuperWalk 2023 to new heights!