In June 2019, Walkabout opened its very own week-long pop-up shop on King’s Road! The Designer Closet Sale sold pre-loved items donated by generous donors, with at least 50% of proceeds going to our projects. We raised an incredible £70,ooo gross and over £41,000 net, which is the equivalent of 164 wheelchairs!
We are so grateful to everyone who helped make this event such a success! From everyone who donated items, to those who volunteered their free time to help us organize and run the shop, and all the people that came along to do some guilt-free shopping for a good cause.
In May we provided 140 paediatric wheelchairs to children in desperate need in the Dominican Republic – all thanks to the amazing fundraising efforts of Laura Porcella Mayol at the Berlin Marathon in 2018. Our team, alongside Laura herself, our partner teams, and a group of local star volunteers, personally adjusted every chair to make sure that each one was comfortable, functional and safe – sometimes taking up to 3 hours on a single chair! The majority of the children we met had never had a wheelchair before, and for them this gift represented a world of new opportunities: to go to school; to play with friends; to be independent for the very first time.
Inspirational fundraisers like Laura and supporters of our cause that make our work possible. On behalf of the people whose lives were changed, thank you!
In July 2018, 4 Walkabout Heroes, Matias, Diego, Will and Lucas climbed over 19,000 feet to reach the peak of Mount Kilimanjaro. Their extraordinary campaign, thanks to hugely generous donations, raised over $76,000, enough to send an entire container of 340 rough terrain, locally repairable wheelchairs to Argentina!
Over the course of 10 days, in what has been our largest distribution ever to that country, Team Walkabout, Diego and our local partner traveled to 6 different locations to personally fit each chair and train the new users in wheelchair skills, ensuring they learnt how to use and look after their new device. Over the course of the trip, our team met people with incredible and heart wrenching stories, and the difference these wheelchairs will make to every person’s life is unique.
You too can become a star fundraiser and make our next life-transforming wheelchair distribution come true! Be inspired and become a Walkabout Hero, or simply donate today.
Para-Athlete and Non-Executive Director of London Marathon Events
“Since retiring from elite athletics I find that having a goal to train for makes me exercise even when I’ve had a long day at work or a big night out and all I want to do is curl up in front of the TV. There’s nothing quite like taking part in events like London Marathon or RideLondon, with hundreds of thousands of people lining the streets cheering for you to go that bit faster – I’ve done around 30 marathons and I keep saying I won’t do another, then somehow find myself on the start line again!
I feel very privileged to have access to a racing wheelchair and a handcycle so I can keep taking on these challenges, which is why I raise money for Walkabout to help provide other wheelchair users with mobility equipment that will hopefully give them the freedom to take part in sport, or even just to get around independently.”
Team USA Para-Athlete and Walkabout Ambassador
“I fundraise for Walkabout because I strongly believe mobility is a human right. Mobility provides people with independence and bodily autonomy, two things essential towards living a healthy and happy life. Wheelchairs provide so much freedom for their users; I can’t imagine life without mine. My hope is that one day we will live in a world where everyone has the mobility device they need and deserve.”
Paris Marathon 2019
“When I signed up to participate in the Paris Marathon for Walkabout Foundation, my goal was to challenge my abilities, but raising money for their cause has been a great motivation throughout the whole training process. I have family members that require mobility aids and I’m therefore aware of the difficulties they face on an everyday basis. Thankfully we are able to provide them with everything they need, but I would like to have a chance to help people with mobility disabilities around the world who are not so lucky by fundraising for Walkabout. I think it’s essential to raise awareness about the work that Walkabout does and I am so excited to be a part of it.”
Walkabout Programmes Manager and Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100 2018.
“I’d never done anything like a marathon or cycling sportive before I did RideLondon. When I signed up, I’d worked at Walkabout for 3 years and seen many people complete amazing challenges for us – and experienced first-hand the effect that their fundraising had on people in desperate need all over the world. I’d been lucky enough to meet hundreds of children and adults who wouldn’t have had mobility if it hadn’t been for the people that pushed themselves to raise money for our cause – so I decided it was my turn!
Training was hard, especially because I was travelling a lot with work, so had to spend a lot of time in Haitian and Kenyan gyms! But it was great to have the motivation to keep going – partly because I knew how hellish riding 100 miles without training would be; and partly because I had in mind the people I’d be helping by doing it. The race itself was incredible (despite torrential rain for 90 out of the 100 miles!) and I’ll be doing it again this year – I’d recommend doing something like this to everyone!”
Paris Marathon 2019
“Giving mobility is something you can’t put a price on – the gift brings freedom, dignity, joy and so much more. I am so proud and excited to be raising money for Walkabout Foundation, a fantastic charity which gives gifts like this all year round. Running a marathon is such an apt fundraiser for this charity given that that act of running is all about mobility. For me it is a privilege that I am physically able to run a marathon and I am extremely happy that my ability to run, will in turn, raise money to award the gift of a wheelchair, a gift of mobility, to so many that are in need.”
Berlin Marathon 2019
“We chose to run for Walkabout because we are incredibly inspired by the foundation’s mission. As athletes, we sometimes take our own mobility for granted; injuries are a sobering reminder of this. Each of us was blown away by the statistics of people in developing countries who don’t have access to wheelchairs when needed. We want to help bring awareness to this issue and tackle the problem by providing more wheelchairs. We believe everyone has the right to MOVE despite any barriers that life throws in our way!”
We have just returned from Northern Uganda, one of the poorest parts of the country and the heart of one of the biggest humanitarian crisis in the world. With hundreds of people crossing the border every day, fleeing conflict and famine in South Sudan, Uganda is now host to over 1 million refugees.
Last year, we distributed 290 wheelchairs to refugees and local Ugandans that are currently subject to enormous pressure in what is a naturally deprived and low resource environment. This year, thanks again to Euromonitor International, we returned to take our mission one step further. As well as distributing a further 300 wheelchairs, we trained 13 local volunteers, many of them refugees themselves, in how to provide and maintain wheelchairs in a safe and sustainable way.
The possibilities for change in this region are endless. Now that we have started to create a skilled team of locals, we can continue to make a difference all year round, but we need your help to make this change last.
On Saturday, September 29th we held our biggest London Walkabout ever, with over 1,200 people walking for those who can’t and raising a record-breaking £115,000 NET! That’s the equivalent of 460 life-changing wheelchairs!
We want to say a huge thank you to each and every person that helped make this event such a success: from the incredible volunteers in our committees, to every single person that attended, and our amazing sponsors that enabled every penny raised to go to our projects!
In June 2018, Walkabout embarked on one of our biggest fundraising ventures ever – we opened our very own week-long pop-up shop in Chelsea! The designer closet sale, which sold generous donors’ second-hand clothes, with at least 50% of the proceeds going to our projects, raised a whopping £70k gross – and £43k net!
We are so grateful to everyone that helped make this event such a success: from the two angel donors who covered the majority of the running costs, to everyone that donated clothes, and all the people that came along to do some guilt-free shopping for a good cause!
In April 2018, we travelled to Kenya to receive a very special container of wheelchairs. This was our first shipment of chairs from Free Wheelchair Mission (FWM), a US-based charity that designs and manufactures high quality, rough-terrain chairs, with whom we are now proud to be working in partnership.
By combining their wheelchair supply with our local contacts and expertise, we have so far been able to distribute 353 life-changing wheelchairs, restoring dignity, freedom and independence to hundreds of Kenyans.
Giving mobility to the millions of people who lack it around the world is a huge job – and we recognise that we can’t do it alone. That’s why we’re so grateful for partnerships with like-minded organisations like FWM, who share our goal of getting the right chairs to those that need it most. In the interconnected world we live in, there’s nothing stopping us from working with others to make a change. Together, we can change the world!
In February 2018, team Walkabout travelled to Sudan for the third time for our biggest ever distribution of 620 basic wheelchairs, paediatric chairs and tricycles. We spent two weeks in three locations in the capital, Khartoum, personally fitting hundreds of wheelchairs for children and adults in desperate need.
Every beneficiary differs in what they need in a wheelchair – where they will use it, the amount of support they need, and what it will enable them to do. For some, a wheelchair will simply allow them to sit up straight for the first time; for others, it will mean they can travel the huge distance to get to the market independently. That’s why it’s so important to have different types of wheelchair for different individuals: a basic rough terrain chair is perfect for giving mobility; a paediatric chair gives extra postural support to those that need it; and a trike allows users with good upper body strength to travel further distances. This distribution was particularly special because we had all three types of chairs in the same place at the same time – meaning that every single person was given the chair that was perfect for them!
We are so grateful to our partners – Usratuna, Khartoum Cheshire Home, NAPO, the Sudanese Foundation for People with Disabilities, and Haggar Trading – as well as everyone that volunteered their time on this trip, especially Maria Luz Haggar and Mary Alice Noto.