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Couple hosting Sarnia’s first ever fertility walk on Oct. 16

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Tara Jeffrey

Colleen and Paresh Thakkar want other families to know they’re not alone.

“We’ve had our own struggles with infertility for the past couple of years,” said Colleen Thakkar. “But we’ve also heard from so many others — their stories, their losses.

“It’s close to our hearts, so we want to help other people going through the same thing.”

The Sarnia couple will host the inaugural Fertility Matters Canada 6K Walk in Sarnia this month, to raise awareness and funds to help support the one in six Canadians who experience reproductive health issues and may need fertility care in order to build their family.

“We saw this event and I thought, ‘This would be a nice way to bring people together,” said Thakkar, who runs a fertility support group for more than 50 members through Victory Reproductive Care in Sarnia.

She also teaches yoga for women’s health — inspired by her own journey with infertility, failed treatment and miscarriage — and is part of a local collaboration called “On Fertile Ground — A Journey to Holistic Fertility,” which is also the name of her team for the event.

Fertility Matters Canada is a national organization providing support, awareness, and education about reproductive health while promoting equal access to fertility treatments. Though the organization’s first-ever walk is slated as a virtual event, the Thakkars and their team are encouraging participants to join them for the Oct. 16 event at Canatara Park, beginning at 9:30 a.m.

“We set a goal of $2,500, then after we hit that, I bumped it up to $3,000,” said Thakkar, pointing to team partner Amy Scott of Straight 2 The Point Osteopathy and Wellness Clinic and founder of On Fertile Ground.

By last week they were in the top three fundraisers across Canada with $3,450.

“Aside from raising funds and awareness, it’s also just a nice way to connect with people,” said Thakkar, noting that many of her virtual support group participants have never met in person.

“So it will be a nice way to connect with people, and show that we’re not alone.”

IF YOU GO:

WHAT: Fertility Matters 6K community walk, Sarnia

WHEN: Saturday, Oct. 16, 9:30 a.m.

WHERE: Canatara Park

DETAILS: To donate or join the team, visit fertilitymatters6k.ca and search for “On Fertile Ground”

 

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