DOCTOR WALKS ACROSS AMERICA FOR HEALTH EQUITY AND A HEALTHY AMERICA
Myrtle Beach, SC – Dr. Dennis Godby, 66, a licensed Naturopathic Doctor from Sacramento, California, will embark on a solo journey—his third on foot across the USA —in the Walk USA for Health Equity, beginning in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina on September 12, 2022.
COVID’s devastating impact on Americans with pre-existing, pre-disposing and often, preventable medical conditions is a call to action and inspired the walk across America. Walk USA For Health Equity (WUHE) will highlight America’s desperate health conditions in communities of color, promote healthy community lifestyle programs throughout the U.S. and to provide education about getting and staying healthy.
To focus the national spotlight on the importance of reversing and preventing disease, the need for healthy lifestyle education, and access in communities of color throughout the USA, Walk USA for Health Equity was created.
Dr. Godby will walk one-fifth of the country each year by himself. Dr. Godby is partnering with local organizations, such as North Carolina Association of Naturopathic Physicians, ministers, health equity advocates and others. Examples of topics that will be included at community forums include: vitamin D, access to safe drinking water, exercise, access to fruit and vegetables, nutrition, mental health issues, and safe neighborhoods. The public events may also include health fairs with blood pressure, heart rate, glucose and other free health checks.
The first leg of the walk—610 miles —will begin in Myrtle Beach, SC, on September 12, and end in Knoxville, TN, October 11, 2022. The itinerary is attached. The 2nd to 5th legs will take place from Knoxville, TN to Seattle, WA from 2023 to 2026.
To minimize the cost of the trip, and to put himself in a better position to meet people along the route, Dr. Godby will not be using a support vehicle, but will be pushing a “jogging stroller,” to carry some provisions. He will camp along the route unless other lodging is provided.
Each day’s walk will take approximately 8 hours, depending on the day’s scheduled distance, weather and the many conversations along the way. Dr. Godby anticipated he will walk an average of 22 miles per day. Most days, the walk will begin about 7-8 am, and end about 4 pm, depending on local events planned, and other unforeseen factors that may arise.
As a 44-year veteran of long runs and walks of conscience for health and social justice, Dr. Godby, hopes to inspire transformation in individuals, community-based program efforts, and local/state and national policymaking. This walk will be powered by volunteers and other health equity advocates across the country.
People often ask why Dr. Godby does these extreme endurance events that put him at risk. He said: The amount of risk and vulnerability one is willing to endure for a cause is directly proportional to people’s willingness to open their hearts, their generosity, and their willingness to listen and be inspired. This method of non-violent, direct action, often “earns one the right to be heard,” from people I have just met.