EXTREME’s 100KM Trek to Change the World
The Laureus Challenge 2022 proved that there are people in this world prepared to make a positive difference through their action rather than just words.
For 5 days, Managing Director EXTREME Destination, Ben Barker, joined over 90 other individuals from all continents to trek 100km across the 7 emirates of the United Arab Emirates, to raise invaluable funds to improve the lives of young people around the world.
Organised by Laureus Sport For Good, in partnership with Sierra Space, the challenge which took place from the 14th-19th November, saw the participation of several Laureus Sport For Good Ambassadors includingformer Olympian & founding member of the Laureus Academy, Nawal El Moutawakel, Australian cricket legend, Steve Waugh, British Olympic cycling champion, Sir Chris Hoy, international adventurer Annabelle Bond and South African rugby icon, Bryan Habana.
Participants were split into 4 teams to take on the endless desert landscapes, rugged paths, and some spectacular wadis. The local wildlife made their presence known a few times whether that was the friendly camel that seemed to enjoy Team Red’s football skills (a ball we picked up and kicked across the desert for nearly 30kms, nicknamed Bryan) or the Death Stalker scorpion, which was not too impressed by so many people trekking through his turf.
“This was an adventure that I’ll never forget. Memories were made as were connections that could open further doors for EXTREME’s vision to drive positive change through extreme and adventure sports. It made perfect sense to volunteer for this experience, allowing us to align with like-minded individuals to do our part to give back to millions of children and young people around the world. Trekking roughly 25km each day across some very rough terrain was no easy feat, and although my entire body is aching and my feet are completely swollen, it was worth every step, knowing that as EXTREME we are using action and every opportunity to encourage positive change in this world,” said Ben Barker.
Founded in response to Nelson Mandela’s challenge set in 2000 that “sport has the power to change the world,” Laureus Sport For Good, uses “sport as a powerful and cost-effective tool to help children and young people overcome violence, conflict, discrimination and disadvantage lives.” Over the last 20 years, the foundation has supported more than 275 programmes in over 50 countries and raised more than €150millionfor the Sport for Development sector, and together with their partners have reached and assisted almost 6million children and young people. Over US$290,000 was raised from the Laureus Challenge 2022 which will support initiatives under the variousLaureus Sport For Good programmes including the Sport for Peace and Humanitarian Action, a global programme supporting agencies on the ground in the aftermath of disasters; Africa’s Sport for Employability and Sustainable Livelihoods that uses the power of sports to unite people and cultivate a sense of belonging and collaboration and the SOS Outreach programme in the USA, ensuring that no matter what social, societal or economic barriers exist, every child is given the opportunity to thrive.
Anyone wishing to contribute further to the Laureus Sport for Good causes should contact the team through their official website https://www.laureus.com