Cape York To Kokoda Countdown At 100 Days

16 July 2015

Mustering up the mental and physical toughness to kayak from Cape York across the Torres Strait into Papua New Guinea and then run the Kokoda Track is not a feat many would dare. Yet four individuals have made Cape York to Kokoda (CY2K) their goal, deciding to complete the entire journey in seven days.

From what we can gather they're not insane. In fact, they have a very good reason for pushing the limits. They'll be raising funds and awareness for the Kokoda Track Foundation (KTF), one of the Flight Centre Foundation's (FCF) charity partners.

 Kayaking across the Torres Strait is just one leg of the journey

Who Is KTF?

KTF is a charitable organisation committed to ensuring all children in the Kokoda region have access to free, high quality and reliable education. This includes providing funding to Kokoda Elementary School, which has only four teachers looking after about 250 students.

KTF is also one of the main supporters of the Kou-Kou (Kokoda) community and their early childhood preschool. With no government support, the preschool would cease to function without KTF's contributions to teacher training, mentoring and educational resources.

 Students at Kokoda Elementary School

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Three Challenges In One

As a word, "challenging" doesn't seem quite enough to portray the journey these four men are about to embark on and the difficulties they will face between beginning and end.

In 100 days, Andrew Malon, Jason Nooning, Bobby Hale and Adam Sheehan will trade in their Flight Centre desks for a kayak and running shoes, and preparation is already underway with training sessions six times a week. However, there is no way to truly steel their minds and bodies for the elements they will face.

Only a few other people in the world have attempted to kayak across the Torres Strait and an even smaller amount have followed this by running the famed Kokoda Track. Both of these are challenging in their own right and combined will require extreme levels of physical and mental toughness.

However, this won't be the first time these four men have faced such a difficult test. Andrew Malon rode almost 800 kilometres from Brisbane to Charleville last year to raise money for drought-stricken Aussie farmers; Jason Nooning combined an iron distance triathlon with a marathon; Bobby Hale cycled from Adelaide to Melbourne in 47 hours; and Adam Sheehan once embarked on a 21,000-kilometre drive through war-torn countries in Asia and Africa.

The CY2K poses another challenge: raising $100,000 so KTF can bring an additional teacher to Kokoda Elementary School and extra resources to the community. Fortunately, this is one with which we can all contribute.

 The four participants are currently training hard for the CY2K

How Can You Help?

There are numerous opportunities available to both individuals and businesses interested in assisting these four men reach their goal, including:

  • Donating items for the upcoming Online Auction and Charity Event
  • Donating money for equipment, safety gear and porterage and trek fees
  • One-off cash donations

It's also possible for companies to provide sponsorship, which yields a variety of benefits including naming rights, logo placement on gear and media platforms, and social media promotions.

The target is $100,000, but any money made above this amount will be used to help FCF's other charity partners such as RedKite, Foodbank, Bush Heritage and YoungCare.

"FCF gives me the opportunity to give back through workplace giving, and to inspire others to do the same through fundraising events, all while supporting vital local charities," says FCTG General Manager, Adam Sheehan.

For more information on how you can help, please contact your FCTG representative or email sponsorship@capeyork2kokoda.com.au.

Ben Stower

I love the kind of travelling that is one part strategic planning and two parts spontaneous adventure. Whether I'm exploring my local city or a small town in the middle of nowhere, I'm always hoping to find something no one else has discovered.