Friday, 3 May 2013

1.Land’s End to John O’Groats. Zennor. Walk for Emmaus Charity, which provides homes and jobs for the homeless. Homeless Link. Virgin Money

The map shows a typical route
for the Land’s End to John O’Groats Walk 
 Robbie and David at the famous Land's End Signpost, Cornwall, 1 May 2013

Friends Robbie Brough and David Sansom, both 19, have just started a sponsored walk for Emmaus Oxford. The walk of 1200 miles from Land’s End to the most northerly tip of Scotland, John O’Groats, is expected to last until the end of July. The boys plan to cover 15-20 miles a day, camping out and cooking on a portable stove with just one set of spare clothing each. 

They give their aims on Facebook:

“We will not be sleeping in beds or tents, GPS systems or anything that could make our lives easier. The reason for this is that our chosen charity is Emmaus Oxford. This wonderful charity takes in members of the homeless population. They rehouse, rehabilitate and reintroduce the homeless into our community. Therefore, we want to relate with the homeless population's daily struggle and pains, and hopefully break our naivety about this serious national issue.

We will however be taking mobile phones and will be updating you guys on our progress, telling you about the people we meet and sharing the experiences we have so keep tuned in to this page!

We ask you in hope to help us raise money for this amazing charity. Simply share this page, donate what you can or join us on parts of the walk.”

Coast Path in Cornwall
Robbie and David are going from Land’s End to St. Ives, (2nd May), Portreath (3rd), Newquay (4th), Padstow/Polzeath (5th), Tintagel (6th), Bude (7th), Minehead, Bristol, Sedbury, Chepstow, Prestatyn, Edale, Byrness, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Fort William, Inverness and round the coast to John O’Groats. Their route takes them through beautiful scenery: the south west coastal path in Cornwall, Offa's Dyke, the Pennines, Central Scottish Way, West Highland Way and the Great Glen Way.

The Pennines
Offas Dyke
Robbie and David plan to link up with companions – the formerly homeless residents of Emmaus communities and other supporters, when they go through the towns and cities where Emmaus is based. They will tweet and Facebook their progress, so that other walkers can come along and join them en route. Emmaus Oxford will celebrate their achievement when they get back.

The boys have already raised over £2,100 in sponsorship which is being match-funded up to £7000. David and Robbie are on their gap year and once the walk is over David is going to Sandhurst to join the army and Robbie to Manchester University to read Mathematics and Philosophy.

Emmaus is an international charity with 24 communities across the UK. It provides employment and new qualifications, as well as places to live for the homeless. In 1991, Selwyn Image, a former student volunteer for Emmaus in Paris, opened the first Emmaus  Community in the UK, in Cambridge, with room for 28 people: there are now over 500 beds at 24 communities in the UK. . Emmaus plans to open more shops and communities and the first Emmaus shop in Cornwall plans is opening this year.Terry Waite has been President of Emmaus UK since 1998

Homelessness in Britain has been on the rise now for several years. Many more people are sleeping rough and services are facing significant cuts to their funding, yet demand is going up. Homeless Link’s annual Survey of Needs and Provisions, SNAP, has just published their annual report:

“In 2012, the number of people accepted by their local authority as homeless and in priority need increased by 10%, while levels of recorded rough sleeping grew by 6%. Despite this increase in demand, almost half of the organisations included in the SNAP report saw their funding fall, by an average of 17%”.

Donations to:
Emmaus UK,76-78 Newmarket Road, Cambridge
Jane Carmichael,Emmaus  Media Officer, 01223 379260