Wee Break

  •  Benjamin Whitaker
  •  April 29, 2014
  •  blog

Just arrived back in Buenos Aires after a week in Melbourne and a week in New Zealand. Although I was mostly running around with meetings, interviews and talks, I did also manage to get some family time in. I stayed with one sister in Melbourne, stopped in for a night to catch up with two sisters in Auckland and stayed 6 days with my parents in Alexandra where my other sister came to visit. Was also great to see various cousins, friends, one brother-in-law and all 7 nieces and nephews.

My good friend Brian who is helping me with publicity, lined me up radio, magazine and newspaper interviews in Oz and NZ. I also did a talk at both my old primary school and secondary school. I still have a wee way to go in terms of improving my interview and public speaking skills, but I feel that now, I truly know the subject matter as I have been living it for around four months, so I am never short of things to talk about!

National radio interview

Because of the success of last years launch event and fundraiser we have decided to make the Melbourne event an annual one. We are also going to have a crack at an event in home town Alexandra. This event looks like it will be an outside affair like a picnic in the park type event. We will have school choirs and bands and also local talent performing in a really nice grass amphitheatre where the towns old swimming pool used to be. There is a lot of interest from local musicians, teachers and school students who want to help out so we are making a planning committee to get the ball rolling. My dad and my cousin are also part of this committee so there are plenty of hands on deck! These events will take place around late October/November.

The trip was truly humbling. The amount of support that we are receiving is so amazing! Everyone is chipping in to make this project come alive. I am meeting a lot of people showing interest in helping in some form or another, and at this point in time I am trying to involve as many people as possible. Every person has a skill set and that means that anybody “who is interested” is able help us out. It is just a matter finding a way that matches their skill set. For example, I met a hairdresser in Buenos Aires. He is coming into the venue on Monday to cut the kids hair! Quirky, but awesome! We are also getting new volunteers all the time in Melbourne at The Final Step and also in Buenos Aires for Food for Thought. My friend in Melbourne is helping us with our website. I am also meeting people who don’t have time but have money so that helps too!

So, I’m back into Gonett on Monday after some time away. I’m looking forward to seeing the kids and singing a few songs! Our plan now is to have some workshops on health and dental care so this means involving local skilled collaborators. Also can’t wait to paint a big mural with the kids and our artist friend! Things are busy. Until next time.

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