Walk To Remember FAQ
In 1988, former President Ronald Reagan declared the month of October as National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month. To commemorate this declaration, many infant loss organizations across the country, such as M.E.N.D., host what is known as a "Walk to Remember". Unlike the name may imply, The Walk is not a fundraiser, nor a "walk-a-thon". Instead, it is a beautiful ceremony to remember our babies who have died.M.E.N.D. is hosting our annual Walk To Remember in Houston, TX on Saturday, October 15, 2016, at 1pm at the Bammel Church of Christ, 2700 FM 1960 West, Houston, TX 77068.
Is there a fee to participate in The Walk?
No. There is not a fee, but it is very important to register.
Can family members and friends come to The Walk with me?
Absolutely. Children are welcome too, but we highly recommend that babies and toddlers are in strollers.
How long does The Walk last?
The duration of the ceremony (beginning with the actual short distanced walked until the balloon release) is between 1 hour 45 minutes to 2 hours.
How far is the actual Walk?
Not far at all. The Walk consists of walking from the church, across the parking lot, to the designated area where the ceremony will be held. The Walk is very slow-paced as the families reminisce about their babies.
Why do I need to register for The Walk?
We provide special ornaments with your baby's name and birth / death date on it. One ornament per baby is given to each family. You may place this ornament on the M.E.N.D. tree at the designated time during the ceremony. Following the ceremony, it is yours to remove from the tree and keep. Additionally, we provide seating for our guests, so it is important to let us know how many people will be with you so we know how many chairs to set up. Same with balloons. The Walk concludes with a beautiful balloon release in which each person attending The Walk will receive one balloon for each baby they are representing, and the balloons are color specific according to the gender of the baby. For example, pink for a girl, blue for a boy, and white if the gender is unknown.
M.E.N.D. offers commemorative t-shirts for each Walk to Remember. This year we will offer "2016 M.E.N.D. Walk To Remember" t-shirts that you can pay for in advance or you can wait until you arrive at the Walk to purchase your t-shirts. T-shirts are $15 each. If you choose to place your advance order, you will pick up your order in The Youth building at the Walk To Remember. Payment is accepted through PayPal, but it is not necessary to have a PayPal account to complete the purchase. Please note that the only way to guarantee a shirt is to order it in advance as those available at the Walk to Remember are sold on a first come first serve basis. Pre-orders will be accepted through September 25th.
Personalized Memory Signs are available for $50 with your baby's name and dates. Signs must be ordered by September 25th. All signs ordered will be displayed along the pathway for The Walk. The signs are yours to keep to take home at the conclusion of The Walk. Signs not claimed at the conclusion of The Walk will be placed in the M.E.N.D. storage unit until next year's Walk. M.E.N.D. will gladly reserve a place for your sign for subsequent annual walks for an additional $25 each year.
If you have a Memory Sign from last year, you will need to drop off your sign, along with a $25 donation to M.E.N.D. at one of several area locations. If you choose to drop it off at the M.E.N.D. support group location, the ONLY time you may do this is on a support group night. Please do not attach any sort of decorations or adornments to your sign.
What if I have registered for The Walk and the number of people I registered as attending has changed — or I am now unable to attend?
Please do not register again. Instead, please contact Stormy Mitchell to report your updated information..
What if I registered for The Walk and I am unable to attend - do I still receive my ornament?
Priority goes to the families who actually attend The Walk, not necessarily to those who register. If we need extra ornaments for those who attend The Walk but did not register before the online registration is closed and we run out of extra ornaments, we will begin to disassemble the unclaimed ornaments and personalize them for those who attend (a good reason to arrive early to check in). If you registered for The Walk, but were unable to attend - we still have your personalized ornament and for a $10 donation to M.E.N.D., we will gladly mail your ornament to you. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org after October 5 to see if we still have your ornament. Unclaimed ornaments will only be made available for two weeks following The Walk.
What do I need to do the day of The Walk?
We ask that you arrive at The Walk 45 minutes to 1 hour before the start time (start time is at 1pm) to check in and pick up your ornament. We will have Memory Tables set up in which you are invited to bring a memento or two to display and share with others. Also, we will have a large raffle for you to browse while waiting for the event to begin. Wear casual, comfortable clothes that are conducive to the weather.
What exactly is the Raffle?
Although The Walk to Remember is not a fundraising event, we do host a large raffle to help offset the expenses of the ceremony. There are several tables full of items, such as restaurant and department store gift certificates, sporting events, health and beauty gift cards and discounts, etc. The raffle tables will open at 12:00, and will close just before The Walk begins. The raffle will NOT re-open following the ceremony. The drawings will take place in the auditorium of The Youth building after the ceremony. Please remove your ornament from the ornament tree before returning to the church to attend the drawing. It is not necessary to be present to claim your item, but we strongly request you stay so we do not have to contact you and arrange for you to receive your winnings. We accept cash, check and MasterCard / Visa.
For Additional Questions
Please contact Stormy Mitchell.