Starting June 5th,, 2023, I will be Taking A Step by walking from Cincinnati, Ohio all the way to Cleveland, Ohio. This walk will be roughly 275 miles. I will be starting on the southwestern corner of Ohio near the Ohio River and ending on the northeastern corner of Ohio near Lake Erie. It will be a river to lake walk. I plan on making a stop in my birth town, Sidney, Ohio, along the way. Last year, I was living in Ohio and walked across Michigan; this year I'm living in Michigan and will be walking across Ohio.
My number one mission for every walk that I do is to show is others that it doesn't matter where you come from, what you've been through, you can do anything you set your mind to... You can go anywhere you choose to go. All it takes is putting one foot in front of the other, one step at a time. All you have to do is keep going, no matter the rocks on the road or the mountains in the distance.
This year, I will be walking to raise awareness and donations for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Shelby and Darke County. This nonprofit organization has a special place in my heart. As a child, BBBS contributed to a good mentor during some pretty tough times when I was a little girl. Big Brothers Big Sisters has a mission to create and support one to one mentoring relationships that ignite the power and promise of youth. Their vision is that all youth acheive their full potential. Our youth are our future and so, I'll be Taking A Step to help them reach their full potential.
BBBS doesn't currently need material donations but monetary donations would be greatly appreciated as their agency is growing. You can donate directly to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Shelby and Darke County by following the link below:
On July 16th, 2022 Rissa set out on a walk from Belle Isle, MI to Mackinaw Island, MI. She started her walk by completing the Escape Belle Isle 10K. Rissa chose to do this walk with her walking partner, Jack Huffman, to raise awareness and donations for the DMAN (Danny's Miracle Angel Network) Foundation. This organization was special to Rissa's heart because they help people with physical and mental disabilities have more resoruces. As most don't know, Rissa has an older brother for whom she was the caregiver of through most of her childhood.
Rissa was determined to finish this walk for everyone who was unable to take a step. She did this walk for her brother. Rissa wants everyone to know that persistence is key. We must keep going. So, that is what she did - she kept going, she persisted. On July 26th, she completed her Island to Island journey after walking 351.6 miles in 10 days and 7 hours. During this journey she was met with so much love and kindness. She was astounded at how many others had similar stories or who of those who did. Through every hill, drop of rain, mosquito bite, she was grateful to know so many walked similar journeys.
On June 22nd, 2021, Rissa decided to start her birthday off on a mission. At 6AM, she started an 800 mile walk from Burton, MI to Kansas City, KS. Her goal was to show others they are not alone. She wanted to share her story and possibly speak up for those that could not. She wanted to talk about the things swept under the rug, she wanted to end the stigma on mental health. During her 54 day journey she was able to raise awareness for Whaley Children's Center, a home for children who have been through trauma and abuse.
Rissa heard many stories over the course of 800 miles. Some stories similar to hers, and some that were paths she had never walked. She was able to show others they weren't alone as well as many others showed her SHE wasn't alone... She faced a tornado, SO much rain, mosquitoes, raccoon bandits and most of all her OWN mind. She realized that if you set your mind to something and believe in YOU, anything is possible. She completed her walk in Kansas City, KS on August 14th, 2021. Since this walk, she has spoken for the National Alliance on Mental Illnesses as well as several mental health podcasts. She also has spoken at high schools and many different mental health groups/events. Rissa continues to share her story in hopes of ending the stigma and she doesn't plan on ever stopping.
Copyright © 2023 Takingastep - All Rights Reserved.