Tag Archives: UNICEF

Fundraiser of the Month – Mercedes Carrion

Mercedes Carrion

Adventure: UNICEF Kilimanjaro Climb for Kids

As our Fundraiser of the Month, Mercedes 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 UNICEF Australia?

I have been lucky enough to travel to many countries in my life so far, but never have I encountered such generosity of spirit, and just a sense of pleasure for life than within the African people. I fell utterly in love with the continent and its people and vowed to one day go back to Tanzania and summit Mount Kilimanjaro.

My trekking buddy, Jihan Rome, who is also coming on this hike has a passion for helping people (although I think it’s less “passion” and just that she’s a genuinely kind human!), and together with our enjoyment of hiking, we paired all our ideas together and climbing Kilimanjaro for UNICEF with Inspired was the result!

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

In short, terrified but elated!

My previous trip to Africa was a one month camping safari from Johannesburg to Nairobi with one of my best friends. We saw the big 5 in Kruger, I jumped into the devils pool at Victoria Falls, snorkelled off Zanzibar island and spent some incredible days volunteering at a school in Zambia with kids who just adored cricket! The continent is filled with such kind people and stunning scenery – it was magic!

I’ve done some significant multi-day hikes throughout Nepal and Peru, and whilst wonderful, none sit as close to my heart as climbing Kili.

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

The people! People are just magnificent aren’t they?! Jihan and I have held multiple cake stalls and Bunnings sausage sizzles, and we’ve had literally hundreds of strangers give us additional cash donations, provide words of encouragement, or share stories of similar feats of accomplishment. Both Jihan and I have gotten to the end of a long day fundraising, and thought “faith in humanity restored”, and what more could you hope for?

"I read a great quote by Nelson Mandela recently – “It always seems impossible until it’s done”. I feel that way now about both our fundraising efforts and the physical challenge of the climb ahead."

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

As a team, Jihan and I set ourselves the goal of raising $10,000. I was worried this was unachievable and didn’t want to set ourselves up for failure. I read a great quote by Nelson Mandela recently – “It always seems impossible until it’s done”. I feel that way now about both our fundraising efforts and the physical challenge of the climb ahead.

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

Since joining Inspired Adventures it’s been incredible to meet other like minded people who are just kicking goals and achieving great things in life. It’s empowering and inspiring to be around positive, motivated, compassionate people. I’m also super proud of my fundraising buddy Jihan, who has been an absolute trooper with organising fundraising activities, training hikes, rallying support for our cause, and being generally awesome – so much love to her!

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

Being back in one of my favourite places, with some wonderful people who share a common desire to make the world a better place – and have some great adventures along the way!

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

Just sign up. Making the decision to partake is the most challenging part. Everything since has been so much fun. I’ve made some great friends, gotten fitter along the way, and enjoyed being part of something that can help facilitate a real change in people’s lives.

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.

Like what you see? Sign up for our monthly eNews!

You'll be kept up to date with all our best and newest articles on travel, world news, philanthropy and lifestyle.


From the Philippines to Australia to Kilimanjaro for UNICEF

Meet Aida Tamargo.

Aida had always planned to do something great for UNICEF and the children they support. It just so happens that what she chose was to climb the highest freestanding mountain in the world!

Growing up in the Philippines, Aida remembers the presence UNICEF had in her community and the positive impact of the organisation. During her career as a paediatrician, Aida worked in a clinic in the rebel-infested mountains of the Philippines. Aida remembers the presence UNICEF had in her community and the positive impact the organisation made to child nutrition, education and development. Over 40 years on, Aida, a mother of three, is dedicated to supporting UNICEF’s vision to build a world where the rights of every child are realised.

“Children are my passion, so when the opportunity to join UNICEF Australia on the Kilimanjaro Climb for Kids arose, I realised that this is something I have to do. Now, rather than later.”

“I’m both excited and anxious. I am excited that I’m doing this with my son (go Team Tarmargo!). It’s another chance for family bonding—to create new family memories. I’m also excited to meet all the other wonderful people on this challenge. I am looking forward to getting to know them and their stories,” she says.

Overcoming several injuries, Aida has challenged herself to recover, keep fit and train hard.

“This has been an amazing journey. The generosity of our community—and sometimes from unexpected places—has truly touched me. It has been a roller coaster ride, but with family and friends supporting us, it has been life-changing.”

Following the adventure, Aida recounted: “My son and I reached the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro together. The previous 6-day trek was gruelling but with magnificent terrain. It was an amazing journey. The generosity of our community truly touched me. It was definitely a roller coaster ride, but the support of family and friends, I had a life-changing experience.”