Ain't Done Yet | Atlanta, GA
You've seen it on the big screen a dozen times before - a team of exceptional athletes with a devoted and enthusiastic coach encounter a formidable opponent and must fight back. We’re not talking Apollo Creed from Rocky or the team from Iceland in the Mighty Ducks 2. This big bad evil sneaks up on its opponents and slowly takes hold. ALS is the worst kind of bad guy, so this hypothetical movie can play out in many ways. Let’s root for the good guys to win in the end, because as their team name suggests, they “Ain’t Done Yet!”
The team of 70 plus people, is mostly comprised of the Lady Chiefs Lacrosse team from McIntosh High School in Atlanta, as well as other friends and community members. They are walking in their third year of the Atlanta Walk to Defeat ALS, with a team goal of $10,000.
Below is an interview with coach and teacher, Gwen S. Thibadeau.
We walk for our team's community coach, Mickey Beard, who was diagnosed with ALS. He inspires our team daily to keep on trying their best and working their hardest to achieve their dreams and reach their goals.
The team name, “Ain’t Done Yet” actually came from Mickey. He told our team last year that when people ask him how he is doing with his battle against ALS, he responds that he ain't done yet. Our team name speaks not only to his battle with ALS and his unwavering spirit, but it also demonstrates our commitment and relentless attitude to pursue our own goals.
We decided to participate in the walk because we wanted to thank him and honor him for all that he has contributed to our team over the past 7 years. The girls on our team have watched the progression of his disease and want to help find a cure so that no one else will have to watch someone they love deteriorate before their eyes.
Raising Money and Awareness
We have lots of fundraisers that support our effort in the Walk to Defeat ALS. We have a skate night for our school, sell cupcakes, t-shirts and bracelets, and hold a 5k/ fun run called Miles for Mickey.
One really cool way we have been able to share Mickey's story is to help bring awareness to ALS. CNN just aired a story about the relationship between Mickey and the girls in a segment called "The Power of She." We also, as a part of our team uniform, wear a red sock on our left foot at each game. We wear them to always show support for Mickey, as well as to give people an opportunity to ask about our mismatched socks. When that question arises, we explain ALS, what it is, and what we do to help raise funds to find a cure.
Our team has responded to Mickey's diagnosis with love and support. People are always so supportive of this cause. The extended lacrosse family has helped by doing other fundraising to help Mickey's family pay for the lift chair at his house, and they have contributed to our efforts in every way possible.
Plan and publicize fundraising events... Use Facebook and local newspapers to help your efforts. The local ALS chapters also have WONDERFUL tools on their websites to help fundraise...use them! Finally, talk to friends! Elicit their help... You never know how much someone is willing to help unless you ask!