(I’ll be posting updates on my preparations to thru-hike the Pacific Crest Trail this next April through September. I’m attempting to raise money and raise awareness for several organizations that help others, inspire, and even save lives. The PCT is a 2,650 mile long trail that stretches from Mexico to Canada. I will need your help…Please join me in this journey by offering prayers, donations, or simply by subscribing to my blog and following along! )
“Persistence always pays off.“
“If you keep trying, good things will happen.“
Chances are we’ve all had those words, or words to their effect, spoken to us at one time or another in our life by a parent, teacher, friend or caring adult. Usually they’re spoken after we’ve bit the dust face first, at a time where we’re in need of encouragement.
This last July, soon after I decided to hike the PCT, I figured out I would not be able to afford to attempt the hike without some type of assistance. I decided to reach out to makers of camping equipment to see if they would be willing to partner with me in this endeavor. I had no idea what the response would be, but I would never know unless I started knocking on doors.
Well, the feedback has been overwhelming. Just under 7 months before I take my first step onto the trail, I have been met with incredible responses. I have been blessed with three of the biggest items I needed on the trip: a backpack, a sleeping quilt, and a shelter system, all from incredible gear makers who are well respected and well known within international lightweight camping circles. There are others that have donated smaller items as well. There are still items I need (among them: six pairs of shoes, can you believe?), but I am optimistic.
Many request letters went out though, before I began getting sponsors. I had quite a few companies write back declining help, but wishing me luck. I have not had one moment of feeling discouraged though, and I believe that comes from knowing without a doubt that this is something I need to do, and something that will help many, many people. If I do happen to become discouraged at some point, all I need to do is think about the women and children I have already met in Mumbai, India, who have recently been or are currently in a very difficult place: victims of human trafficking and forced into prostitution…with a 60-70% HIV rate in the Red Light District…some estranged from their families and loved ones, never to find them again.
Their freedom and well being is why I am hiking, so even the harshest of setbacks, words, opinions, or rejections will not mean a lot to me. I know what’s at stake…I’ve been there, seen it with my own eyes, and am determined to follow through on a promise I made to help do something about it.
To those gear makers who have donated: I give you a huge “Thank you.” I can’t express my gratitude in deep enough ways. For those gear makers that might donate in the coming months, I appreciate you just as much, even though you don’t know it yet!
And for those like you that want to donate financially – specifically to the causes I am hiking for – every penny will be going straight to those causes. I will have a special P.O. box that will be used specifically for donations, and will list that this coming week. Any amount will be appreciated, and I will be placing those funds in a special bank account. Donations will be tax deductible, and every person who donates will receive a special photo and gift from the women and children in Mumbai that they helped, after the hike. I’ll be listing all the donors in a special section on the blog, and if you like, “Anonymous” is an option. Please think & pray about giving.
Hoping that if you’re reading this, all is good where you are!