long walk home

Charity Walks...are they for you?

Some people love them, and some people don’t.

I’m somewhere in between.

I walk the occasional one to support the charity by either raising money or raising awareness. Sometimes I walk one because of the distance and structure - I like a goal and a challenge, so these events give me something to walk towards. I also walk them to promote Walksport by getting out there among other walkers, wearing my Walksport t-shirt and cap and having a chat. My favourite reason to do a charity walk is that feeling of being a part of something and being surrounded by like-minded people – either those who believe in the charity, or those who just like to walk.


walksport long walk home walk



There are times that I don’t love a charity walk. They can be a little bit competitive with people racing ahead, probably to find some space away from the crowd and to find their own pace. If you’re not careful you can wind up walking at a pace that isn’t right for you.  Popular walks can be busy and if you’re like me and don’t like crowds, it can be pretty uncomfortable. There have been a few times where I’ve felt that charities are competing with each other with events running on the same weekend but only one getting media coverage. Fundraising can also make me uncomfortable – sometimes it comes easily to me and sometimes I just don’t want to do it and so the contribution I make is the entrance fee and being another person that raises awareness.



long walk home



A couple of weeks ago, Catherine and I participated in the Long Walk Home - which is run by The Wayside Chapel.  I love their mission;


Our mission is creating community with no 'us and them'.

We do this by breaking down the barriers of judgement and providing a safe place where people from all walks of life are welcome.



long walk home route



We walked and chatted with some of our fellow walkers, but mainly with the volunteers who cheered and encouraged us, fed us and guided us - they were amazing. In the final 10km, walking over the Gladesville Bridge, a bloke walked up next to us and we ended up chatting with him through to the finish in Kings Cross.  The conversation started like any other… ‘how are you travelling, not far to go now, have you done this walk before?’.  It wasn't long before it became clear that this fellow had 'inside knowledge' about Wayside Chapel - and it turned out that's because he is the Pastor and CEO - Jon Owen.  It was a fascinating conversation, punctuated with the volunteers, our fellow walkers and the Saturday night revellers in the city cheering us on. We formed our own small crowd, walking up William Street towards Kings Cross, willing every traffic light to turn green on our approach.



long walk home ceo with walksport founder



There are good and bad things about charity walks, and if you choose to participate, do the things that make the walk enjoyable for you.



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