Alaska? What does that have to do with medical work in Kenya? Read this special message from Hope Matters supporter Kim Sparks to find out..
The best ideas come when you least expect them! Hi, my name is Kim Sparks. I am a young professional who currently lives in Seattle, although I have spent most of my life in Southern California. My life is relatively ‘normal’ considering I work a 9 to 5 job, pay bills, enjoy spending my free time with friends and family, and being active etc. All of that is going to change this summer. I am quitting my job, hitting the road and spending the summer running from the U.S./Canadian border to Hyder, Alaska in support of Hope Matters International!
Self admittedly, this is a pretty crazy undertaking. But I think that’s part of the appeal for me. I love being in the outdoors, and the thought of a challenging adventure excites me! I once took a summer to hike the Sierra Nevadas five years ago, and it’s been too long since I’ve been out. As John Muir would say ‘The Mountains are calling, and I must go.” Only, this time I’ll be in Canada!
This also marks the end of a difficult chapter in my life. It is a celebration of the difficult, but life-giving, decisions I’ve had to make in regards to personal and work relationships. But I also want this run to be about something bigger than myself. While continued personal healing would be great, I’m more excited to see how this experience could be used to bless others.
Why Hope Matters International?
I have known Michelle for about 15 years now. She was highly involved in my church high school youth group, and I really connected with her. I admired all the work she was doing to become a nurse at the time, as well her passion for Africa. Although we both became busy with our own lives, we’ve stayed connected through periodic updates. Michelle’s work in Kenya has been on my heart for some time, and it was a natural choice to support her organization.
The Daily Grind
Essentially, this is one really, really long camping trip. We are officially leaving July 2nd from Seattle and heading to the U.S/Canadian border. Once we clear customs, I’ll hop out and begin!! I am so thankful to have the support of my boyfriend Caleb, without whom this trip would not be possible. He will be driving all the gear as we travel. Essentially I will be running part of the day for approximately 10 miles along country roads, and then setting up camp. Caleb will be spotting me (following me with the car) on some of the more narrow portions of road/up the 1 major mountain pass we have to cross. There will be some time for rest and sightseeing, but for the most part this will be our daily rhythm for the next 3 months. If you would like to get updates from the road, follow us at www.findingalaska.net!
How Can You Get Involved?
Please consider joining me, and donating to an extremely important cause. Many of us are extremely fortunate to have accessible medical care, unlike many people in rural Kenyan villages. My goal is to raise $14,160, which is based off of the total KM of this trip. If you want an easy breakdown, consider donating 25 cents a mile, which is $220, or 50 cents a mile which is $440. All donations are tax deductible. Check out Hope Matters at www.hopemattersintl.org
Donations can be made through http://www.hopemattersintl.org/give.html. Online transactions are through Pay-Pal. Please indicate in the note/memo section that your donation is in support of: Alaska or Bust 2015.
Donations can also be made by check made out to Hope Matters International and mailed to P.O. Box 9293, Alta Loma, CA 91701. Again, please indicate in the Memo section that your donation is in support of Alaska or Bust 2015.