Last week, employees at Ventana Medical Systems in Oro Valley participated in their second annual Children's Walk to raise money for Casa de los Niños and orphans in Africa.


On Thursday, 372 employees took to Innovation Park Drive for a walk to benefit orphaned and neglected children. The employees raised $15,000, and the company matched that sum dollar for dollar.


Last year, scientist Melanie Miller traveled to Malawi, South East Africa, to see orphans the Children's Walk directly affected.


"It is really impressive to see all of the support," Miller said. "It is great to see all these people enthusiastic to help kids not only in Tucson, but nationally.


Employees found creative and different ways to raise money for the cause, from selling homemade pies and cookies, such as Miller did, to covering an employee's desk in little ducks.


Debbie Lewis, who works as a global technical supporter, got the idea to use small plastic ducks as a way to raise money. She had seen people on the Internet do similar things with plastic flamingos on people's lawns as a way to raise money.


Co-worker Alyssa Jordan, who works in technical support, said a fellow employee's desk was covered with plastic ducks, with a $1 charge to have them removed. The unlucky recipient could then pay $2 to have the ducks moved to another employee's desk of their choice, or the recipient could pay $5 to have the ducks moved but also keep a souvenir duck.


In a little less than two weeks, the group "Quack Attack" raised $358. Jordan said she raised another $60-$70 selling the ducks during the walk.







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