Nonprofit races and walks: Uniting for a cure

Amramp at the ALS Walk

Nonprofit walks and races have blossomed in popularity across the United States. For many, like Amramp of Omaha owners Todd and Bridgette Torring, running marathons is how to stay in shape after age 40. They recently finished the Boston Marathon and are fund-raising for Team World Vision.

Many more are also driven by a personal story: One of 43 local Amramp owners nationwide, Amramp of Maine and New Hampshire owner Mark Rafferty participated in the ALS Walk in Portland, Maine.

“If they can, people living with Lou Gehrig’s disease also participated to help support the mission to find a cure. It was important for me to simply be there to support the community,” Mark said.

Working within the community, many health care professionals are often participants, whether raising funds and lacing up athletic shoes, or helping with logistics. Scores of medical professionals volunteer their services to ensure participants receive appropriate care when they’ve pushed themselves too hard.

Organizers, meanwhile, need to be sure these events are accessible to everyone. Most routes are flat and easily navigated. But in some locations, curbing presents a challenge. Some events feature entertainment along the way and need to provide stage access. Water stations en route also need to be easily accessed by people in wheelchairs.

Amramp’s modular steel ramps can be installed with just 48 hours’ notice and can be rented for a single day, a weekend, or longer.

“Events like these are really moving,” Mark said. “Almost everyone there has been touched by the disease, whether a family member, friend, or colleague. Everyone has a story to share, and there are lots of memories of loved ones.”

Find a cause to rally for today, whether it’s raising funds or volunteering as a medic or handing out bagels and bananas.

For more about Amramp’s services and free on-site estimates, please contact Amramp’s National Call Center at 888-715-7598 or visit

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