Last June I was injured severely while hiking in Alaska just outside Denali National Park. I had gone to scout a cliff I had seen from the road to see if it would be a viable climbing spot. Approaching from the backside, I arrived at the top first. I took a moment to peek over the edge, then as I turned to walk away the ground broke loose and I fell an estimated 100 feet. I shattered my left leg, breaking the left tibia into at least 10 pieces, I fractured the 2nd and 3rd metatarsal in my right foot and I broke my T12 vertebrae.
(The news article that describes the majority of the 12 hour ordeal and the rescue that followed can be found here: http://newsminer.com/2006/06/21/508/)
I spent 9 1/2 months on crutches(from which I am 2 weeks recently, and thankfully, liberated from), and nearly 6 months in a "TLSO" back brace. The resulting atrophy in my muscles was substantial. Measurements taken at an examination only 4 months after the accident showed that I had already lost 3 centimeters circumference muscle mass from my left thigh as compared to my right. Clearly insult to injury for someone who is a certified professional snowboard instructor(AASI Lv2), active climber, recreational skydiver and all around active person.
Furthermore, I was with out insurance and will be relying on Medicaid and SSI to cover my bills and get me back in action. In the mean time, I had been brainstorming ideas on how I might be able to rehabilitate myself when I started applying to schools for a BA photography program. I was accepted to my first choice school(I haven't asked for permission to use the schools name yet so it will not mention it right away) for the September 2007 session. Thats when I decided that my idea to use the summer for a touring trip, going from the east coast of the US to west coast - home to school, is the best rehabilitation option I could imagine!
I also felt that while I am at it; since society is helping me out with Medicaid and SSI, why not see if I can find a charity to promote my ride as a way to give back? I imagine some sort of walk-a-thon style promotion where benefactors contribute so much for every mile I ride. The actual details I haven't patterned yet as I thought that would be best discussed with an experienced organizer.
So my question for the forum is this: Is anyone here involved with or know of a charity that can help set up something like this? I didn't have any particular charity in mind but I figured something for cancer research would be a good idea seeing as how I have 2 cancer survivors in my family. Any suggestions or assistance with how to direct this plan is what I need!
I've also heard through conversation that bike-shops like to sponsor things like this and if I can find any assistance in that vein as well, I'll take it!
Thanks in advance.
Last edited by OmlessWanderer; 04-29-07 at 10:39 PM.
Hope the leg recovers, thats a big fall!! My girl and I are also doing a tour soon, from Uni to Home.. and we are also thinking of doing it for Cancer research, at the minute, we really havent took it any further yet, as we wanted to start the training for the tour, and start planning the route.
My cousin is raising money for charity at the minute, and she is using an online donations website, that send the money directly to your charity, and also (in UK) add on the Tax that you have paid on this money through your wages, which they then get back from the government. Seems a good way to raise some cash. Ill keep you posted when we look into it a bit more, see if we find anything good out...
About sponsorship, we managed free cycling Tshirts from a shop, with their logo obviously, but it saved us 40-50 euros buying one. Though, we did buy all our panniers from this shop, so deserved some freebies, were going back to get the shorts of him soon haha. I would usually bargain more with shop owners, but the language barrier is hard (English -> Spanish), and my basics only take me so far...
It might be www.justgiving.com. I used it recently to raise £630 for the National Autistic Society, with a short tour of the Black Forest. I found it good in that I didn't have to handle any money, but I did find you had to pester people a lot. People who genuinely want to donate read your email, forget, haven't got their credit card, haven;t got time. I think I sent some people 4 reminders before they donated.
Also, I found the site seemed to default to one day events. WHen you set up your page, it asks you to put a date in. I put the start date, assuming I could edit it later, but then found I couldn;t. In reality, I should have put the end date, because this is the date the page expires and people can no longer donate.
Hope that helps.