two years ago, the middle school kids at my church got stoked about one life revolution, and the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of some aids orphans in zambia. they set what i thought was an audacious goal, to raise $3000 to fund a house for some orphans.

after putting on a variety show as an opportunity to tell the story of these vulnerable children and ask for money, they raised a shocking $25000. we used the money to fund two clean-water wells in zambia.

that next summer, i got to tag along with a handful of youth workers who’d been involved in OLR, as they visited zambia. two of those youth workers — kathryn leeke and jody duhamel — were on that trip (i posted about it here and here). jody is now the manager of the customer service and sales department here at ys (you might talk to her if you all and ask questions about a ys event!), and kathryn continues to plot and think and burn passionately for the children of zambia.

here’s a picture of kathryn and jody on that trip (at the dedication ceremony for a donated well):


the next year, jody and kathryn, along the middle school ministry volunteers who originally got this thing rolling with our youth group, john and vicki freese (vicki works at ys now also!), lead our students in another fundraising variety show. that year they raised $35,000, and funded a medical clinic.

back to the africa trip. kathryn and jody spent a bit of time in a tiny zambian community called twachyanda. they both fell in love with the people there and felt compelled to do whatever it took to help that community. the children in twachyanda walk 6 miles to attend a school that’s in horrific condition. a single donor has stepped up and offered world vision half the money to build a new school. kathryn and jody are asking the people of san diego (and anyone else who wants to help!) in raising the other half.


to that end, they’ve launched walktheirwalk. it’s a 12 mile walkathon designed to raise awareness and funding, taking place at lake murray regional park here in beautiful san diego (on saturday, september 29). i’ll be there, along with my family. my wife and daughter will be walking. max and i will staff a water station. we’ve just heard we might have a very special guest that day also.

i would LOVE to invite any san diego peeps to join us. san diego youth workers — get your groups involved. go to the website for more information, and to sign up.

6 thoughts on “walktheirwalk”

  1. Marko,
    Are Jeannie and Liesl looking for sponsors? I’d so be in on that deal… if I weren’t a two day drive from San Diego, I’d love to participate myself. E-mail me–I may not be good for a significant sum, but I’d love to chip in if Jeannie and Liesl need people to sponsor them.

  2. thanks, katie — yes, they will need sponsors. i don’t think they’ve signed up on the site yet. once they do, i’ll shoot you an email.

  3. Marko,

    We are totally there! I wanted to wait until I had a chance this Sunday to talk to my whole youth group, but it looks like a good number of them want to do the walk. I’m just telling you ahead of time, though — by the time I reach your water station, you might need to wheelbarrow me off to the finish line :) Thanks for posting about this!

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