Tag Archives: Amnesty

Fundraiser of the Month – Lara Johnston

Lara Johnston

Cause: Amnesty International
Adventure: Hike the Homelands

As our Fundraiser of the Month, Lara has scored herself a $50 donation to her fundraising page. To be our next month’s winner, make sure you’re uploading your journey to social and use the hashtag #IveBeenInspired.

What inspired you to take on your adventure challenge with Amnesty International?

30 years of life and I have so much to be thankful for. It is the blessings that I have and continue to experience that make me feel compelled to have a positive impact in my life journey, that make me feel compelled to take action to combat social injustices that are present in our world. I have taken up this adventure challenge for this reason, but also because I love to travel and learn about and experience the land, culture and history of other places. It also incorporates exercise – activism, exercise, travel and learning what’s not to love?!

How are you feeling about the challenge ahead? Have you ever been to Central Australia before? Or done any similar treks?

I am feeling really excited about the Hike for the Homelands challenge because I have never completed this trek before and love the idea of taking up an adventure in Australia. Last year I was fortunate enough to hike the Machu Picchu trek in Peru on another Inspired Adventure expedition for Oxfam Australia. I am also excited to support an organisation that promotes and defends human rights for all.

What have been some of the highlights of your fundraising experience so far?

I am so fortunate to have such compassionate and generous networks that every event I have organised so far has really been a good time catching up with beautiful people. A particular highlight for me though during my fundraising experience has been encouraging supporters to engage with social issues and support Amnesty International campaigns by signing petitions for current campaigns. It has been really interesting to engage in dialogue with people about causes and social issues they feel passionate about.

What have been your biggest challenges in taking on an Inspired Adventure? How did you overcome this?

Not returning emails and phone calls to the lovely Inspired crew in a timely fashion. I’m not sure I have overcome this – it’s just who I am – lucky they are such an approachable, friendly and helpful bunch!

Have you noticed any changes or transformation in your life since signing up for the challenge?

I feel really fortunate to access such an opportunity as it has enriched my life and made me a better person. I see Inspired Adventures and their challenges as an avenue that has helped me to be an agent of social change while still allowing me to experience what our country and world has to offer. It has changed my view on travel and also provided me with an avenue to promote amazing non-for profit organisations to my friends and family that they may not hear about otherwise. Hearing my friends and family say things like ‘Can’t wait for your next fundraiser’, seeing the impact it has had on those around me, even if just through conversation, is pretty sensational. On my last Inspired Adventure trip, I experienced so many awe inspiring moments with such wonderful like-minded people and I’m confident that the Hike for the Homelands challenge will be as equally amazing.

What are you most looking forward to about your upcoming challenge?

I am really looking forward to looking up into the night sky in the Australian outback, seeing some exceptional country and making connections and friendships with new people.

What advice would you offer to other people looking to complete a challenge like this?

The Inspired Adventures website is so easy to navigate. Find a challenge or country that fits your needs and wants or alternatively find an organisation that stirs your conscious and run with it. Training for adventures are made easier when you invite friends and family to join you. When you are fundraising and organising events, don’t be afraid to ask people to help or donate their help in whatever form that may be, donations of items or time. Do it! You won’t regret it.

Fundraiser of the Month

Become our Fundraiser of the Month to win a $50 donation to your fundraising page!

Take a picture whilst fundraising for your adventure and use the hashtag #IveBeenInspired and your adventure hashtag. The most exciting use of the hashtag, with a fundraising focus will be our Fundraiser of the Month – it’s that easy!


What you can do about the global refugee crisis

We all know there is a global refugee crisis.

Right at this moment, there are over 50 million refugees worldwide. 50 million humans who have been forcibly displaced. 50 million humans without a home. 50 million humans suffering from a situation that’s completely out of their control.

In less than 5 years, over 4 million refugees have fled Syria to neighbouring countries and more than 7.6 million residents are internally displaced. In the first six months of 2015, 140,000 refugees and migrants (mainly from Syria) crossed the Mediterranean Sea despite the dangerous and terrible conditions involved in the hope they would find asylum.

We imagine that you feel just like us, utterly hopeless. So we thought we should speak to those in the know, our international NGO partners, to find out how individual Australians can make a difference.

(Source: UNHCR)

1. Give money

You can help by making a donation to the international NGOs who are on the ground providing immediate aid and assistance to those in need.

Australian Red Cross is providing humanitarian assistance to those made vulnerable by conflict and emergencies by providing the basic necessities people need to survive: from food and water to medical care and hygiene items.

Australia for UNHCR needs your help to provide refugees with desperately needed kits to survive and thrive. $288 can provide 3 families with emergency survival kits with sleeping mats, blankets, kitchen sets and soap.

Oxfam Australia is on the ground in Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Egypt providing desperately needed emergency assistance. They have reached more than 1.3 million people with clean drinking water, hygiene and sanitation programs, as well cash and relief supplies such as blankets and stoves in winter and vouchers for hygiene supplies in summer. $240 can give 50 people living in tented settlements in Jordan access to showers.

For the past five years, UNICEF Australia has been providing Syria’s children with life-saving support in the form of shelter, life-saving nutrition, clean water and sanitisation, temporary learning spaces and psychosocial services. But with no end in sight for the ongoing conflict, the children of Syria desperately need your support. $75 provides 10 blankets to Syrian refugees to provide comfort and protection against the harsh winters.

Save the Children is on the ground saving lives in Syria, Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt and Iraq, and providing food, water and health care to children and their families. So far, they have helped more than 2.2 million people, including more than 1.5 million children – but many more need your help. $30 provides 8,000 litres of safe drinking water to a community of 1,600 people per day.

Photo source: Australian Red Cross
Photo source: Australian Red Cross
alt text="UNICEF child"
Photo source: UNICEF

2. Give time

There are a bunch of ways you can volunteer your time. Here are just a few:

3. Sign petitions and join movements

Signing campaigns is a simple but effective way to get your voice heard about issues that matter most to you.

GetUp is one of Australia’s largest campaigning communities with almost 1 million Australians joining the movement. Visit their website and support their current campaigns.

Amnesty International is a global movement of over 7 million people committed to defending those who are denied justice or freedom. You can take action online.

alt text="Amnesty International"
Photo source: Amnesty International
alt text="GetUp Australia"
Photo source: GetUp Australia

4. Donate goods and services

Again, donating your unwanted goods is an easy but powerful way to help those who really need it.

The St Vincent De Paul Society has a long history of helping refugees and migrants.You can donate your unwanted (clean and in good condition) clothes and goods. Visit their website for more info.

The Asylum Seeker Resource Centre allows you to donate food and goods to refugees and asylum seekers.

5. Fundraise

While this option takes some planning and dedication, it’s an extremely rewarding and worthwhile way to contribute your time and heart to causes that need it. There are a number of ways you can go about it:

  1. Set up an online fundraising page with Everyday Hero and ask your friends, family and colleagues to donate.
  2. Take on an adventure and fundraise for a charity who is working in International Aid and Development or Human Rights. Check out our calendar.
  3. Host an event, like a Movie Night or Trivia night and donate the proceeds.

We acknowledge this list is by no means exhaustive, there are many many organisations doing incredible work to help the plight of refugees all over the world. If you know of other organisations or ways to get involved that are worth a mention please let us know!

Header photo credit: UNHCR/Federico Scoppa

Related articles:

Feeling inspired?

Make a difference to those who need it most and take on an Inspired Adventure. Visit the calendar to find your challenge.

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