Hillston’s Stacey Storrier is among 3700 trekkers gearing up for the walk of a lifetime for a cause close to her heart.
Stretching 60 kilometres from one iconic beach at Manly to another at Bondi, Sydney Coastrek aims to raise $2.8 million for The Fred Hollows Foundation.
Stacey is training and raising vital funds in the lead up to help end avoidable blindness.
“I’m looking forward to a challenge, and spending time trekking, training and fundraising with inspiring friends,” Stacey said.
“Two of our daughters have sight problems that we are lucky enough to be able to correct … helping restore sight to even just one person … it makes the task so much more rewarding.”
Since Coastrek began in Sydney in 2010, nearly 19,000 trekkers have raised more than $14 million for The Fred Hollows Foundation. The funds have restored sight for hundreds of thousands of people and also helped prevent avoidable blindness by training local eye doctors and health workers to provide eye health awareness, screening and treatment.
Founding Director of The Fred Hollows Foundation, Gabi Hollows, said it was inspiring to see so many people join the fight to end avoidable blindness.
“There are 32.4 million people in the world who are blind, and four out of five of them don’t need to be,” she said.
“This year we mark the 25th anniversary of The Fred Hollows Foundation and I am incredibly moved and inspired to see people still going to such great lengths to help realise Fred’s vision of a world where no person is needlessly blind.
“To everyone participating in this year’s Sydney Coastrek, thank you for giving the gift of sight by taking on this challenge. We are incredibly grateful for your support.”
Founder and CEO of Wild Women on Top Coastrek, Di Westaway, said Sydney Coastrek was a way for women to come together for their own health and wellbeing, while also changing the lives of others.
“Coastrek helps women feel awesome about themselves and about helping others. It supports them in regaining their confidence, often after health or personal challenges, and helps them to be active and healthy,” she said.
“Coastrek has an even greater impact on the millions of women and girls who make up two-thirds of the world’s blind.
“By taking part in Coastrek, women are restoring sight to other women, which helps them to return to work so they can provide for themselves and their families, and also helps girls to return to school and continue their education.”
A recent study by Griffith University found that training for Coastrek creates sustained behavioural change for trekkers as they shift from thinking negatively to thinking positively about getting outdoors.
The study revealed that many Coastrek participants are busy mums who have limited time to exercise, and that training for Coastrek provides personal rewards, incentives, and peer and social support to include outdoor activities as part of their regular schedule.
This year’s trekkers include Coastrek Patrons Julie McCrossin and Adam Spencer; and journalists Angela Mollard, Jennifer Byrne, Tracey Spicer and Tory Maguire.
To support Stacey and her team go to sydneycoastrek.com.au.
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