Visiting from outside Australia? Visit

Our very own Cal was given a fundraising challenge for the ‘Camps Foundation’ over the recent Christmas holidays. As he’s going into schools and chatting with future fundraisers, we thought it was only fair, he gave it a go too! Have a read how he got on…

A challenge was given to me in late December last year, that over the holidays I was to try and raise $800 in 7 days towards the Camps Foundation. I instantly felt a variety of emotions come over me.  I soon realised that the emotions and the reservations I had about this task was exactly how our students feel if they have any aspiration on travelling on one of our expeditions! It all makes sense to me now; I was excited to roll my sleeves up and get on with the task at hand!Screenshot 2019-05-15 at 11.15.20 am

I went to the drawing board to try and conjure up as many ideas as I could in order to reach my goal. I had many ideas that sprung to mind but not many that were plausible given the timing of this task was the week after New Year. I thought shall I do something as simple as a bake sale? That idea was quickly thrown out when I realised, I can’t bake! Then Bunnings Sausage Sizzle came to mind, of course – who doesn’t love a snag when doing your hardware shopping? Unfortunately, roadblocks were put in front of me with this one as I was too late to the party and all 3 of my nearest Bunnings stores already had various groups satisfying their local communities snag cravings and they didn’t have space for one more.

It was now when I started realising that this task was going to be harder than I envisaged, my ever-growing empathy for the students who have to raise funds in a similar time frame was increasing by the minute. It was now sink or swim time (pardon the pun… please read on) in relation to me deciding on what I should do in order to raise funds. Then landed on the idea of the Aquathon Duathlon, a sponsored 2km ocean swim followed by a 10km run on February 2nd. I should add at this point, I am in no way built to swim 2km in the ocean nor do my knees lend itself to running 10km on a concreted road! I do spend a lot of my spare time in and around the ocean however, this is normally on a large piece of fibreglass floating around! I personally thrive on being challenged and this is why I felt that participating in this ‘Aquathon Duathlon’ was perfect for me.


I jumped onto the register gateway and paid my registration fee and signed the metaphorical dotted line…. there was no turning back now! I decided to create a ‘Go Fund Me’ page to get our Camps Foundation message out there by providing more information to potential sponsors. The ‘Go Fund Me’ platform is great for tracking and thanking the generous folk who choose to make a difference by sponsoring. I then decided to use social media as my outlet source to let people know of my plans. I shared my ‘Go Fund Me’ link via the powers of Facebook, Gmail and LinkedIn! This is where I generated the majority of my funding in the week, by having personal conversations with friends and family who then were engaged and more obliged to donate once they knew more information about The Camps Foundation charity and all the great things they do. This really taught me how to get my voice out there.

The 7th day of my 7-day fundraising challenge was upon me. Unfortunately, I didn’t reach my challenge goal, however I raised $300 in the 7-day window. I feel the things I learnt from the task definitely out way the tangible money I raised within the week. I have built empathy with the students who experience the same challenge if they want to embark on an expedition. I can now relate to the pressure they must feel when they first start on their journey with fundraising, but as I did, once they roll up their sleeves and get into it – it’s such a rewarding experience! If I had any advice for students who may have the same apprehension I felt when starting, it’s to embrace the challenge of fundraising and trust that what you are doing is going to have a lasting positive impact and change your life and the lives of the communities that we work with and are part of.