Ally's Blog

Maggie’s Light walks all over Towson

By: Ally McNamara
TU journalism student | Sept. 28, 2009

Mary Anne Kane Breschi, President of Maggie's Light Foundation Inc., addresses the crowd about the foundation and the need to raise awareness.  Breschi thanked all participants for their time and donations.  (Photo by Ally McNamara, Sept. 25, 2009)

Mary Anne Kane Breschi, President of Maggie's Light Foundation Inc., addresses the crowd about the foundation and the need to raise awareness. Breschi thanked all participants for their time and donations. (Photo by Ally McNamara, Sept. 25, 2009)

Participants of Maggie’s Miles gathered to run, walk, and roll Friday, Sept. 25, on Burdick Field.

According to the Maggie’s Light Foundation, Inc. website, Maggie’s Light is a non-profit organization that “helps families obtain funding for respite services and identify caregivers.”

Families post ads on the Maggie’s Light website looking for students who would be interested in working with their son or daughter who has special needs.  Student caregivers provide education and transportation.

Mary Anne Kane Breschi, President of Maggie’s Light Foundation, Inc., chose to hold Maggie’s Miles at Towson because it is the ideal place to find local students interested in becoming caregivers.

“There are over 217 thousand children in Maryland with special needs, and without funding many families struggle,” said Breschi.  “Families are forced to quit or cutback on work hours because they cannot find caregivers.”

Maggie’s Miles was not only a way to raise money and awareness, but also to establish a relationship with families and the community.

“Maggie has had over 17 caregivers, most of which have been Towson students,” Breschi said.  “We are very fortunate to have received respite funding because there have been major budget cuts to two of the existing respite programs.”

The Developmental Disabilities Administration, one of the respite programs hit by the budget cuts, has a wait list of about 10 thousand children needing respite funding.  Families may remain on this wait list without funding for three to four years.

Sophomore Leslie Halloran, a pre-special ed major, came out with her boyfriend to participate in the 5k run.

“I found out about Maggie’s Miles through a friend and it sounded like a great cause and I enjoy running,” said Halloran.  “My brother is autistic and I understand the importance of raising awareness for those with special needs.”

Participants paid $10 to register and received a T-shirt, bracelet, and food.

Organizations such as The Arc of Baltimore, the Student Occupational Therapy Association, and Disabilities Support Services, were set up on Burdick Field.  With music provided by The Lake Effect and games coordinated by Adventure Pursuits, there was entertainment for runners, walkers, and rollers of all ages.

“Maggie’s Light had hoped to raise $10,000 through Maggie’s Miles,” said Sam Breschi, another member of the family and coordinator of Maggie’s Miles at Towson.

With 330 people coming out to the event, Maggie’s Light raised a little over $6,000.  That money will serve 20 to 25 families.  Mary Anne Kane Breschi already has 20 families in desperate need for funding and the money raised Friday night will cover their needs.

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1 Response to "Maggie’s Light walks all over Towson"

[…] Maggie’s Light walks all over Towson PR group plans ahead […]

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