The Grand Junction Fire Department kicked of its annual Fill-the-Boot campaign, Saturday.
Its part of an international effort to raise money for muscular dystrophy, a disease affecting hundreds of families in Western Colorado.
"More than 40 diseases make up muscular dystrophy and there is no cure yet," Kendall Montagriff, with the Muscular Dystrophy Association, said.
Children with muscular dystrophy face difficulty everyday because of the disease.
9-year-old Shane Walz is no exception.
Back in 2005 he was diagnosed with an unknown type of MD.
During Shane’s uphill battle, the Muscular Dystrophy Association has helped pay for his testing, wheelchairs, and other equipment.
His grandmother, Danna Michels, says "for the family, what MDA kicks in is money towards research and trying to find a cure."
Shane has been working with Children's Hospital in Denver, trying to find a more specific diagnosis in hopes of getting successful treatment.
Fundraisers like Fill-the-Boot make that possible.
"In a single weekend we'll collect anywhere from 10 to 15 thousand dollars," Grand Junction firefighter, Derek Trombetta, said.
What happens is firefighters throughout the U.S. and Canada go out in the community and collect donations for MDA.
"They’ve raised over 300 million dollars as a nation," Montagriff said.
"One thing that's really neat about it is that all the money that we collect actually stays in Colorado. 77% percent of the proceeds we collect stay on the western slope,” Trombetta explained. “Today we're fortunate enough to have Shane, who's a local recipient of the MDA funds, come out here and help us out. You get to see directly where it goes and how it helps.
If you want to donate, it’s easy.
Firefighters will be filling boots now until Monday night.
You’ll find them at Grand Junction City Market stores, the Wal-Mart on North Ave, and Albertson's on Broadway.
For more information about muscular dystrophy visit www.mda.org