Hello. On May 12th 2007 I am racing a 50 mile ultra-marathon to raise money for humanitarian relief in Africa. The ultra-marathon features 50 miles of off-road trails and 8,530 feet of climbing in the mountains of Santa Cruz. All proceeds* from my race will be used in Ethiopia to combat pandemic disease (including HIV/AIDS), reduce extreme poverty and hunger, reduce child mortality, improve maternal care, provide primary education to girls and boys, and foster spiritual reconciliation.
Why am I asking for your support? Because every 3 seconds a child dies in extreme poverty. Because 1 billion people live in substandard housing without clean water or adequate sanitation. Because 1 person in 7 goes to bed hungry each night. Because around the world, 104 million children do not go to grade school, because their parents cannot afford fees, books or uniforms for their children. Because 18 million children have already lost one or both parents to AIDS (12 million of them are in Africa alone). Unless more is done, there will be 25 million of AIDS orphans around the world by 2010. Because more than 14 million refugees or internally displaced people are living in tents or temporary shelters. Because each year, more than 500,000 mothers die from complications during routine child birth.
Can you make a difference? Understandably, it is hard to see how one individual can have any impact. But by working together “a million drops of rain can make a desert bloom”. And because all of these maladies can be prevented easily and cheaply.
There are thousands of villages world that have no school, no clinic, no business, no government office -- but they have an indigenous church. These churches are key to understanding local needs, to coordinate limited resources, and to effectively mobilize people “at the grassroots”. As you may know, I am a member of a faith community, Family Community Church. From June 18th – July 1st of this year, a team of 20 volunteers, including myself, will be traveling to Ziway, Ethiopia (located about 2 hours south from the capital city of Addis Ababa in the Great Rift Valley).
We will work together with the people of Ziway to meet their needs including helping to distribute medical and hygiene supplies to poorer neighborhoods. We will pitch in at an orphanage. We will deliver food to widows. We will deliver school supplies to local children. We will help a local church build pews. But most important of all, we will experience daily life together the people of Ethiopia. After the trip I will provide you with a report and pictures of how your support helped change their lives for the better.
For the 50 mile ultra-marathon you can either sponsor me for an amount per mile or you can specify a maximum amount. After the race I will follow-up to tell you how many miles I completed and collect your contribution. All contributions are tax-deductible.