A group of Mission Australia supporters and two members of our leadership team recently returned from the Larapinta Trek in Alice Springs. We are pleased to announce that through their efforts they raised $91,000. When combined with the $74,000 raised by last year’s group they exceeded the overall goal of $150,000 to launch a new Missionbeat service for young people in the Northern Territory.

On the walk, trekkers were able to experience the beauty of the Northern Territory through its mountains, valleys, rivers and desert landscapes. As beautiful as the trek was, a highlight occurred before the trek even started. This was when the group had the opportunity to visit a Mission Australia service centre in Alice Springs and see for themselves the work Mission Australia does to reduce homelessness and strengthen communities.

While at the centre, the group was shocked to find out the average waiting list time to get into the housing communities in Alice Springs is four years. Centres like the one they visited assist with transitioning primarily Aboriginal people into housing communities. Most families otherwise are homeless.

“It was a moving experience for many of our supporters,” said Head of Fundraising and National Chaplain Paul Molyneux who participated in the trek. “It helped them to understand the significant need for a Missionbeat service in the NT, and to realise that their fundraising efforts will change lives.” The trekkers covered a total of 60 kilometres over five days. Along the way, they visited a range of local landmarks, including Wallaby Gap, Serpentine Chalet Dam, Ormiston Gorge and Mount Sonder.

Mission Australia CEO James Toomey participated in the trek last year and joined this year’s group for the Mt Sonder summit.

“The Mt Sonder ascent is the toughest part of the trek, especially as the majority is done prior to sunrise in the dark,” said Toomey. “But the sense of achievement and the views from the top are worth the effort. To look out over the ranges, plains, valleys and salt lakes below is a truly magic experience”.

The members of the group have since finished the trek and gone their separate ways, but the memories, friendships and impact they made along the way will last a lifetime. 

Great work team! We are so proud of your efforts!

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