The MS-Read-A-Thon encourages children and their families to read, enjoy books, and, if they are so inclined, raise money for the MS Society. This free, month-long event promotes the importance and joy of reading. Also, it provides children with a straightforward, easy way to learn about charitable acts, and an opportunity for all to discover more about MS.

How Does The MS Read-A-Thon Work?

So, how does the MS-Read-A-Thon work?

This year is slightly different from the previous MS Read-A-Thons. Rather than being school-centric, with kids registered through school teams, in 2021, the MS Read-A-Thon begins with families. Adults register their kids wh then participate as individuals. If their school is participating, kids can also link to their class team.

You can also create teams outside of school so your child’s Girl Guides, Scouts, cadets, sports teams, art classes, or any other group can fundraise together. We’re canvassing our homeschool groups, autism support groups, and loosely organized book nerd friends. We’re even looking at starting a junior Zoom book club to Read-A-Thin together.

How To Register For The 2021 MS Read-A-Thon

Visit the MS Read-A-Thon registration page, and you’ll see a page like the one below. Each person registers as an individual, but adults can register multiple children under a single login. If you have more than one child that wants to join the MS Read-A-Thon, you need one account.

We signed up this morning. It took less than two minutes to register both Evey and Gabe for the Read-A-Thon. All you need to do is record your child’s name, address, age and decide on a fundraising goal. Each child chooses from a set of avatars and then has their own page like this:

A child’s page allows them to record the books they’ve read and track the donations made in their name. The page also provides resources to help keep the Read-A-Thon fun. It also links to the child’s fundraising page, which tracks your kiddo’s progress towards their fundraising goal.

How The MS Read-A-Thon Raises Money

Donors can make a straightforward donation on your child’s page at any point during the Read-A-Thon. You can choose to ask for or offer a donation in return for each book you read, as you would with a traditional sponsorship event. However, you don’t have to.

Kid’s Win Too With The MS Read-A-Thon

The MS Read-A-Thon resource page has a certificate you can download and personalize for your child.

Once kids get going with their fundraising, they can earn personalized avatars and fundraising badges for their page. Each week, you’ll receive an email letting you know where your child is on their fundraising journey. The email will also provide them with a star level reward.

Why Join The MS Read-A-Thon?

First and foremost, all money raised during the MS-Read-A-Thon goes towards research programs to find a cure for MS. The MS Society Canada also improves the quality of life for Canadians affected by this chronic autoimmune condition.

As for our kids, they learn the importance of charitable giving and how they play a role in making the world a better place for others. Your child can also discover how, despite the fact they are small and may not have any financial resources, they still have plenty to give and that their actions are meaningful.

What Is MS?

The MS Read-A-Thon raises money for research into Multiple Sclerosis, a chronic autoimmune disease of the central nervous system.

Since that includes the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerve, MS can affect vision, memory, balance, and mobility. It is an episodic disability. This means the severity and duration of illness and disability can vary and are often interspersed by periods of wellness.

MS can also be progressive.

How Common Is Multiple Sclerosis?

Over 90,000 Canadians live with MS and, on average 12 more people receive a MS diagnosis each day.

MS is the most common neurological disease affecting young adults in Canada. Adults between 20 to 49 are most likely to receive a diagnosis; younger children and older adults can also develop the disease.

In Canada, the average age of an MS diagnosis is 43. 60% of adults diagnosed with MS are between the ages of 20 and 49 years old.