Bali expats plan ultra marathon to fund kids education

Published:  15 Aug at 6 PM
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Tagged: Visas, Money
Seven disadvantaged Balinese children will be the beneficiaries of an 84km coast-to-coast fundraiser marathon organised by two expat runners.

Briton Tom Hickman and his Russian running mate have lived on Bali for several years, enjoying the lifestyle and running regularly as a hobby. Hickman told local media the idea of the marathon was born when the pair decided to give something back to the locals who’d been part of their amazing Balinese experience. The fundraising event will start at the northeastern coastal town of Tejakula and end 84 kms later at the popular village of Canggu, taking two days to complete.

Hickman’s Facebook page promotes the aim of the marathon – to raise enough money to put seven local disadvantaged kids through their entire primary school education. The financial goal is $7,800, little enough to secure a primary education for children from a poverty-stricken rural area unknown to tourists. A video on the Facebook presentation features Classroom of Hope founder Darren Ward describing little-known, high-poverty level eastern, northern and western regions of Bali where children just don’t have access to formal schooling.

Hickman is hoping the marathon won’t be just a one-off, and is intending to make it the first of many involving expats who want to give back to local people and the community in appreciation of their kindness to resident foreigners. Tourism is a financial mainstay for Bali’s economy, but the money spent doesn’t often find its way to areas well outside the tourist trail. The two-day marathon is due to begin on August 19, with the Faceboo0k page already raising $2,360 towards the total.

The two runners are envisaging more runs with many people taking part, thus raising more money to educate disadvantaged children in the region. He’s encouraging passionate patrons of the local Genius Café to join in the last 10kms of the race following the two expats’ tackling of Kintamani’s heights and the slopes of volcanic Mount Batur.
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