Walk scheduled to help stomp out drug and alcohol addictions

The Center for Chemical Additions Treatment is asking families throughout the Tristate to walk in unity to "stomp out the stigma" of alcohol and drug addiction at their inaugural 4K walk on Saturday, May 21st, starting at 9am.

The walk, sponsored by the CCAT Mothers' Council, is raising money to support the non-profit agency, which operates a residential substance abuse program. This year's walk is in memory of Cole Waldron, who died August 12, 2010 of an overdose. Waldron, 24, was the father of two preschoolers.

The walk route starts at the CCAT entrance, 830 Ezzard Charles Drive, and proceeds 2 ½ miles through the West End. The group says the rain-or-shine event is family friendly, and strollers and leashed dogs are welcome. Cincinnati landmarks along the route include Union Terminal/Museum Center, Cincinnati Police District 1, Music Hall, City Hall and a water stop at Cincinnati Cooks! a subsidiary of Freestore/Foodbank. The event also features a "Kids' Area" with games, Shriners clowns and a guest appearance by the Cincinnati mounted police.

The center says they have tracked a dramatic rise in drug addiction among young people in the last several years, CCAT President/CEO Sandra L. Kuehn said. "In 2004, addiction to heroin and prescription pain killers represented 9% of CCAT's total population; just six years later in 2010, it skyrocketed to 61%. In 2004, 25% of our patients were young men between the ages of 18-30 years old; in 2010 that number grew to 41%. Untreated addiction is claiming the lives of more and more of our young people each year. The need for addiction treatment has grown dramatically while, at the same time, operating funds from public sources have decreased," Kuehn said.

The early-bird discount registration fee before May 13 is $25 per person/$75 for family 4-pack, with a free T-shirt. Children under 5 are free. Walkers are encouraged to solicit pledges to raise funds for CCAT. To register online by credit card or to download forms to send by mail, visit www.ccatsober.org. On-site registrations are $30 per person/$100 for family 4-pack. For more information, call Nancy Buck at 381-6672, ext. 24.

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