April 12th, 2012… $50,000 for Camp Quality!

When I started this journey of 100 Things, I comprised a list of things that I’d never done before. Embarrassingly, raising money was something that I’d always avoided and so straight on the list to went.

Having really enjoyed working with kids in various casual jobs up to that point such as surf coaching, I decided to raise money for a kids related charity and after a quick phone call to the first charity that popped into my head, Camp Quality, I was excited to announce that sitting at Number 4 on the list was to raise an ambitious$10,000 for this charity who so amazingly put smiles on the faces of kids and families affected by cancer.

As it happened, i put a donation button on my website immediately and before long people who had first heard about my journey would hop online and donate whatever change they had. With momentum picking up quickly, a few larger donations soon began to trickle in and incredibly we hit the $10,000 mark in about 6 months. Any money that I made by virtue of my list was also donated (this continues today). By this time though I decided that I loved raising funds for Camp Quality and so seeing that my own list wasn’t complete I decided on the spot to raise the target to $100,000!

Today, some two years on, I’m writing with a big smile on my face. I’ve just looked at the total and we are officially half way- $50,000! It’s an amazing feeling!

The first thing I want to do is thank EVERYONE who has been kind enough to donate. It’s generosity like that keeps this world turning.

For example, last week when I ticked off Number 22- Have a Boxing Match, a girl approached me before the fight and handed me a cheque made out to Camp Quality for $500! id never met her but she’d enjoyed the journey and had huge respect for the charity. People are not only donating their hard earned money now but some are also throwing events to raise funds. Two weeks ago I flew down to Melbourne to attend (and speak at) a cabaret night and a trivia night, both of which were organized by followers of the 100 Things journey who just wanted to contribute! These events raised a total of $7,000. On another occasion I gave a talk about three weeks ago to a room full of corporates and at the end of the speech, a man approached me and said ‘I’d like to donate $5,000!’. Amazingly not only did he do this, but he also got his company to match the amount- another $10,000 in total. In two weeks I’d raised $20,000 and it’s because of stories like this that we are now half way to ticking off $100,000!

It’s fair to say that there’s many charities out there and donating to any of these is a great things to do. One thing that I am extra proud about though with Camp Quality is what I’ve seen at the other end of the all the fundraising- the programs. It’s always good to see what happens to the funds.

From in-hospital programs aimed to entertain the kids going through treatment, to in-school programs designed to educate the kids peers about cancer, every base is touched. Yesterday for example I was invited to join a happy group of 30 kids who were all taken to Luna Park in Sydney. This program was offered as respite for the parents who could relax and have their own time for a day while their children were entertained. It really is comprehensive. I could go into lots more details such as saying that 91 cents of every dollar donated goes towards the kids, but more importantly to me is that as I sit here and reflect on what was an incredible day, the one thing I can’t get out of my head is all of the smiles! These kids were constantly smiling.

Laughter is the best medicine

Like Camp Quality say, laughter is the best medicine, and there is no doubt that in a day where I go to speak and engage with the ones who matter the most, the kids themselves, we were all laughing!

I can’t wait to raise another $50,000 and tick off number 4- Raise $100,000 for Camp Quality!

I'm excited...

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