New Zealand's Te Araroa (The Long Pathway) is a trail that officially starts at the tip of the North Island in Cape Reinga, and finishes at the most southern point of the South Island, Bluff, approximately 3000 kilometres later.
When it came to deciding on a charity that Adam wanted to raise awareness and money for, The Fred Hollows Foundation was the obvious choice.
From an early age, I wore glasses, and in recent years; contact lenses. Originally, I had a condition called Amblyopia, which is what the eye sees, failing to transmit through the optic nerve to the brain. Fortunately, that was cured. Glaucoma also runs in the family.
In 2013, Adam Chambers set out to walk northbound, starting in Bluff, and made his way up through the South Island during the Summer and Winter of 2014. Although the average time frame for walking this trail is around 6 months, Adam allocated 8, to divert from the trail at stages to visit other attractions, and see more of New Zealand.
In recent years I have come to understand myself more through time spent alone and in the elements, which has helped me grow and strive towards new goals.
The majority of known eye conditions have developed treatments which most people living in Western Society have easy access to. I don’t want to see blindness and vision impairment ignored in any country, but I feel as though there are people in more dire situations, living in developing countries.
If I am to describe some of the aspects that make me want to walk the length of New Zealand, they would be; for the personal challenge, both mentally and physically. Despite Te Araroa now becoming popular around the world, it is still relatively fresh, and not a path so frequently travelled. I believe it is important to spend time in the moment, and appreciate what is around me, rather than getting caught up on irrelevant issues, and remembering the important people in our lives that are sometimes forgotten.
I chose New Zealand after spending some time in the Marlborough Sounds around the northern end of the South Island back in 2010; subsequently I fell in love with the country’s diverse and ever dramatic landscapes.
I have a passion to learn about a country’s environment and culture by spending time in, walking and experiencing the spectacles that are unique to different parts of this planet: Earth.
As a part of this whole journey, I would like to see, not only myself benefit from this, but hopefully help people to reconnect and remember compassion towards each other. As well as supporting The Fred Hollows Foundation in restoring sight for people living in rural communities and developing countries, which lack the necessary aid.
Since completion, this journey has dramatically shaped how I choose to experience life and give back to the community in a variety of ways. An experience such as this is truly life-changing, empowering and enriching. I would encourage anyone to take on a challenge that makes them wonder.