On a mid-October day later this Fall, I will be looking out at the world from the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro, Africa. The journey to 19,340 feet began on Monday, June 18th when the students of Ridgeview Elementary first heard that their Vice-Principal was going on an adventure for the BC Children’s Hospital. Their excitement and engagement grew when it was discovered that they will have the opportunity to follow the adventure through the use of cell phones, satellite phones, blogs and maybe even Skype!
What I have most enjoyed since my announcement has been the connections students, parents and teachers have made with me about Kilimanjaro and the Children’s Hospital. Many have told me about their dream to climb this fabled mountain, about someone they know who has been to the top, their knowledge of Africa and how the Children’s Hospital has affected their lives. The importance of this climb recently struck me when one of my students handed me a flag that read “The Children’s Hospital saved my life”.
My own reasons for climbing came from the birth of my son Owen. Last year we were living in Tokyo when the earthquake and subsequent radiation threat occurred. At that time, my wife Charity was 12 weeks pregnant. We continued to remain in Tokyo until June with the daily stress of regular aftershocks and uncertainty in the press about the spread of radiation from Fukushima. Obviously we were more sensitive to the potential dangers as we became protective parents of our baby bean. Upon our return to Canada, we carried the weight of our original concerns and worried about the health of our baby at birth. Relieved and happy on September 15th, we held our healthy baby Owen for the first time. The Children’s Hospital is there for families in need of care. Everyone that supports this climb, is contributing to the accessibility of much needed facilities and resources necessary for the health of children.
My goal for this trek is to: engage, encourage and inspire the students of Ridgeview and beyond to learn about the world around them, challenge themselves to climb their own mountains and understand that they can make a difference in the lives of others. Kids supporting kids is a very powerful message.
I feel fortunate to go on this journey and invite you to join me by following this blog, the Summits of Hope Blog, getting involved through donations and fundraising, and sharing the story of my adventure with those around you.
How You Can Help
There are many ways you can support this climb.
1. Donate directly to BC Children’s Hospital, through Summits of Hope, by clicking on the green button below. A tax receipt will be provided.
2. Bring people together and hold your own fundraiser for Children’s Hospital on behalf of the climb with Summits of Hope.
3. Donate to the costs of my climb. Through my involvement in this trek, the Children’s Hospital will benefit greatly from the donations I am able to raise. As there are significant personal costs, I am hoping to fund the expenses of my climb and airfare ($2,640 US fees and $2,140 CDN flights) separately from the fundraising for Children’s Hospital. Click the button below to donate to my costs.
4. Participate in upcoming fundraising events such as Music Trivia night on Main Street. Stay tuned…
5. Share my story.
Thank you for your support.
Below is the slideshow presented to the students at the Ridgeview assembly.