First of all, sorry that there was no diary last week. I was taking part in the Kiltwalk (apologies – not for World Medicine but for a charity that my wife Sarah and I run), and Sunday was a recovery day after climbing my first mountain for many years! Emma and Jude will no doubt be laughing at my wimpiness, since they strolled up the same mountain a couple of years ago, and managed to then walk all the way to Fort William – 20 miles or so further on! Nevertheless, I’m proud of what I achieved, and I hope all of you, too, are proud of the progress you are making.
And great progress it is! The Snow Leopards, Tigers and Wee Monkeys are all now close to Dover and everyone may be on the continent by the time of the next diary. Those of you in those teams might be forgiven for thinking you’ve gone round in a big circle because tonight you’re all very close to Leeds Castle, and of course Leeds is one of the biggest towns in Yorkshire, where you left from 4 weeks ago! But fret not, Leeds Castle, confusingly, is nowhere near Leeds – it’s in Kent, and is one of the most spectacular castles in England. It’s a moated castle, dating from 1119, so home to 900 years of history. Well worth taking time from your Chaparda Challenge to take a look. You can do that virtually, of course – click here for a 20 minute video tour. Or visit the website of the Castle to learn more about its amazing history.
The Peacocks, meanwhile, continue to stride out, having now reached the very pretty town of Wiesbaden / Mainz in Germany. You may never have heard of Wiesbaden / Mainz until now but it’s a place that’s had a massive influence on your life… It’s the birthplace of Johannes Gutenberg, who invented the mechanical printing press, allowing mass publication for the first time. We have books today because of him! And as you can imagine, the Peacocks will have the opportunity to visit the Guttenberg Museum if they so wish – and why wouldn’t they! It tells the story of 550 years of the printed word.
So everyone on the Challenge has the chance to take in a bit of culture – don’t miss it!
This week we had the very sad news from the Jay Ambe Hospital that coronavirus has taken quite a strong hold in the region and the hospital is struggling to cope, but doing magnificently in the circumstances. World Medicine are in the lucky position to have been able to make a donation to support the hospital, and that’s thanks, in large part, to the efforts of all of our walkers and to the fundraising efforts of the past couple of years.
Chief among the fundraising efforts has been taking part in annual Kiltwalks, an initiative of the Sir Tom Hunter Foundation whereby they pledge to give a 50% top-up of all money raised. This has been very welcomed by World Medicine and in fact the last one was only last week! You can read about the efforts of our team of walkers in our World Medicine Blog – and a special shout-out to young Rafe from our Wee Monkey’s team, only 6 years old, who walked 25 miles over one weekend! Go Rafe!!
All our walkers have their own dedicated fundraising page so do please let people know they can support you on your walk and that anything given can be put to good use immediately. Our fundraising is creeping up, so very many thanks to those who have donated and have encouraged friends and family to do so.
Have a great week ahead, and don’t forget everyone is welcome to add comments and photographs for the diary or blog.