March of Dimes kicks off

Published 8:01 pm Friday, February 18, 2011

Suffolk’s 2010 March of Dimes March for Babies attracted between 300 and 400 people. The five-mile walk wound through Suffolk streets and neighborhoods.

The March of Dimes is gearing up for its Suffolk March for Babies, set for April 30.

A kick-off luncheon for any individual, group, organization or business interested in forming a team will be held Feb. 28. RSVPs are required, and are due Feb. 23.

The March of Dimes is well-known for its historical dime-collecting efforts to help prevent premature births. But the mission of March of Dimes stretches far beyond that, said Tara Moore, walk chair for the Suffolk March for Babies.

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“It’s not just prematurity,” Moore said. “There’s just a lot that the March of Dimes focuses on.”

The organization not only helps fund research to prevent preterm birth, but also works to help all babies be born healthy and stay that way.

“Our research is helping with seizures, infertility, cystic fibrosis, Down syndrome, epilepsy, diabetes — there’s just a whole wealth of research that March of Dimes has helped,” Moore said.

The organization also steps in during times of disaster to ensure that parents and expectant mothers have all their needs met, Moore said.

“We can truly see where the money is going to research and the research is making a difference,” she said. “Bringing a healthy baby into the world gives them that extra push to be on track when they get into school.

The Feb. 28 event will help familiarize new teams with the March of Dimes mission and get them information about the main event, said Kristin French with March of Dimes. Last year, more than 60 teams participated in the Suffolk March for Babies.

“We welcome teams from every which way,” she said.

For businesses, sponsorship opportunities for the March for Babies still are available. Sponsors that have already committed include WAVY-TV10 and Fox 43, 97.3 the Eagle, QVC, Lipton/Unilever, Sentara Healthcare and the Nansemond River Pilot Club.

The kick-off luncheon will be held at 12:30 p.m. at Primo 116 Bistro Italiano on West Washington Street in downtown Suffolk. To RSVP, call Kristin French at 361-0000 or email Seats are limited.

More information is available at