KA Has Heart Spotlight: The MS Society
by Brenden Nickels
Brenden Nickels is a senior office assistant at Kraus-Anderson headquarters in Minneapolis.
There’s nothing like taking a nice walk on a spring day where the weather’s just fantastic (which can still be done when you’re social distancing). Even better is when you’re taking a nice walk for a good cause. Kraus-Anderson has annually had a team participating in the MS Society’s annual MS Walk, which would have taken place on Sunday, May 3rd at Minnehaha Park, but because of the coronavirus pandemic, it is now virtual, as are other MS Walks across the country. Our team name is “Krausies for a Kure.” Visit our Facebook page to see how our team members are putting on miles between now and then, and join us for a Facebook Live event on Saturday, May 2nd at 11am Central time. Make sure to wear orange and cheer on the team.
Their Vision: A world free of multiple sclerosis
The MS Society has a simple vision: “A world free of multiple sclerosis.” Multiple sclerosis is a disorder that affects the nervous system, keeping nuggets of info from reaching the brain. The immune system mistakenly destroys the nerve fibers, as well as their insulator, known as myelin. Scar tissue then forms around those areas, and that is where the disorder got its name from: “multiple scarring”. Symptoms of MS include weakness, having difficulty walking, and problems seeing or hearing things. Some people affected by MS have used crutches to walk, or even have to use a cane or a wheelchair.
What the MS Society Does
What the MS Society does with the funds that it receives is help people with MS live their best lives and find ways to discovering a cure. Examples of how it helps those with MS include education and support resources for them, as well as resources for family and caregivers to cope. In addition, the MS Society has donated over one billion dollars to MS research, making it the largest private funder. Because of this, they have been involved with the discovery of more than 20 “disease-modifying therapies”, and they have helped make more research on MS happen in the past five years than the previous 75.
Needed Now More than Ever
“People who live with MS need us now more than ever!” said MS Society Upper Midwest Chapter President Kathleen O’Donnell. She is proud to work for this organization, and is grateful for Kraus-Anderson’s partnership, which includes the fact that Vice President of Strategy and Innovation Tom Emison is currently the Board Chair.
Krausies for a Kure
“Our whole world in the Emison home sort of revolves around the MS Society.” Emison adds. “We do the walks, the bike rides, the dinner events, the annual banquet, and other activities in support of the mission. COVID-19 really reminded me just how important our work is. Pam (Tom’s wife, who was diagnosed with relapsing, remitting MS 27 years ago) is very grateful to Krausies for a Kure! But, she reminds me “Tom, others in KA have a loved one or family member with MS, too. This walking and other work the Krausies will do is for all of us affected by this disease.”
There are many different ways to get involved with the MS Society. You can volunteer, you can advocate, you can donate, and you can participate in events like the MS Walk. If bicycling’s more your thing, the MS Society does hold bike rides in support of their cause. Rides include the MS 150, (which was going to be from Friday, July 12th to Sunday, July 14th but has now gone virtual as well), and the biggest one of them all, TRAM (The Ride Across Minnesota) from Sunday, July 26th to Friday, July 31st.
And while we won’t walking or biking together in person for right now, you can still walk and raise or donate money and even join Krausies for a Cure through September 30, even though the celebration is May 2.
More information on the MS Society and all of its events is available here: