In nine days, I'll be waking up at dawn, wrapping warm clothes on, packing some snacks and water, and setting out to walk 33 kms without shoes.
Call me crazy, but I'm doing this to raise enough to keep a thousand kids in school.
It's an audacious goal but I'm committed. I'm not ok with just sitting back while these kids miss out on education. I'm asking for sponsorship, a dollar per barefoot km, or whatever you can afford.
I've been living barefoot for nearly 3.5 years to raise awareness and funds for the beautiful children of Cambodia. What's that you say? Why would I do such a thing!?? Great question my friend...
I lived there for a while, and saw the rawness of poverty. In our incredible country New Zealand, we don't often think about how life would be without the ability to read and write (I know I didn't). Imagine for a second not being able to look something up on google, to read an article about health for your children, to know what the contract you're signing actually says, to read this very blog post. How do you learn anything, how do you get a better job?
We take it for granted, but the ability to read, and therefore to learn from the world, is absolutely so vital in helping people out of poverty.
I'm so passionate about this that when I moved back to New Zealand, I decided to do something wild, so that people would ask questions. I decided to live barefoot, rain and shine, summer and winter. My friends and their friends were generous. Together, we sponsored nearly a thousand school packs (uniform, books, backpack, shoes) for kids throughout rural Cambodia last year (which is ridiculously cool).
This year, those kids need to stay in school, and they need new uniforms, new books (kids grow, people!). The school year in Cambodia starts soon, and we currently sitting at just over 5 grand for this year, which will sponsor about 250 kids. So we've got another 15 grand to raise to keep all our 1000 kids in school.
I'm still living barefoot, but I'm going to up the ante, and do an even crazier thing: walk completely barefoot from Upper Hutt to Central Wellington (about 33 km).
I'm hoping to do it in 9 hours (cue nervous laughter).
You can cheer me on/watch me suffer here. Seriously, I'm gonna need the support.