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Annual NAMI Mercer Walk Fights Mental Illness Stigma

The 7th Annual NAMI Mercer Walk will take place Saturday, May 17 at 9 a.m. on the campus of the Educational Testing Service (ETS). NAMI Mercer, an affiliate of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, will sponsor the event with the dual goals of fighting stigma and raising money to support its free programs for individuals and families affected by mental illness.

The spring walk-a-thon is NAMI Mercer’s largest community outreach activity and the organization’s greatest fundraiser. Over the past six years, the event has brought in more than $600,000 in individual and corporate donations. Otsuka America Pharmaceuticals is the Walk’s “Premiere” sponsor with many others, including The Times of Trenton, Janssen Pharmaceuticals, the Honorable Joseph and Nancy Irenas, Mercer County Woman, and Alexander Road Associates. The goal this year is to raise $150,000.

Lawrence Township Mayor Cathleen Lewis will serve as an honorary chair along with Assemblyman Dan Benson of Legislative District 14; Assemblyman Reed Gusciora, Assemblywoman Bonnie Watson Coleman, and Senator Shirley Turner of District 15; and Assemblyman Jack Ciatarelli, Assemblywoman Donna Simon, and Senator Kip Bateman of District 16. Dr. Michelle Kramer, VP at Janssen Pharmaceuticals also will serve.

The event will feature a wellness fair, where local vendors will provide on-site health and wellness information and services to walk participants. Complimentary food and music will be available throughout the morning and into the early afternoon.

For more information about the walk and opportunities for volunteers, vendors, and sponsors, contact NAMI Mercer Director of Development Christine Bakter at (609) 799-8994 or cbakter@namimercer.org. Register to walk, form, or join a team, or make a donation at www.namiwalks.org/mercercounty.

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