As the daughter of uber-CITW supporter and former CITW board member, Miles Crisp, it’s perhaps no surprise that Georgina is herself a long-time supporter of our programme. A poster girl for all things adventurous, Georgina has committed to running this year’s K-Way SkyRun as a CITW Ambassador; the run is an epic self-supported race set high in the Eastern Cape’s Witteberg Mountains – a #HelluvaRun as their marketing touts it!
I guess you could say that my journey with CITW started in 2008, when I was 15 and joined my very first Tour de Tuli event (it was still Tour de Kruger at that stage). My family and I had always heard from my dad how beautiful the event was, and how tough the thick sand was – so I managed to convince him that he had to pull me out of school for the week and take me with him.
At that stage, I don’t think my 15-year-old mind could comprehend exactly what the value of the work CITW did was – I did, however, know from my first taste of the event that this cause was a special one. It has now followed that CITW has remained the cause closest to my heart as I’ve grown up.
Fast forward six years, and me being quite an adventurous person, I decided that for my 21st birthday I’d quite like to take on trekking to Everest base camp. My university schedule meant that this would have to be done during mid-winter in Nepal – which ensured a very frosty experience. I also decided that if I was going to get so much enjoyment from this trip, I needed to do some good and help others achieve their goals in whatever way I could.
I decided to use my trip as a fundraising initiative for CITW and set up my fundraiser profile and tried my best to convince friends to donate to my cause – and give a little to CITW in support of my trip. This was my first attempt at fundraising – and I ended up targeting my dad and his friends a lot for this – given most of my friends were struggling on their varsity budgets.
The month before I left on my trip to Nepal, I was lucky enough to join some of the CITW Eco-Camps hosted in Botswana where I assisted as one of the counsellors for a month in November – December 2013. What a great experience this was – and truly let me understand the value of CITW and what it provides for the children. Following this, I headed off to Everest base camp.
I was able to raise a small amount towards CITW, this was my first real taste of fundraising.
Now knowing what CITW was really about, seeing the value and having raised some funds – I was hooked. Keeping it closer to home, I was able to volunteer on another Eco-Camp in Pafuri in July 2014. This was special – it was a full circle moment – as I celebrated my 21st birthday on this camp. I got to share with the children my experience of trekking up to Mount Everest, somewhere I had always dreamed of seeing. I was able to leave them with a message of hope, and one that you should never be afraid to follow your dreams. I am so delighted when I see the amazing results and progress the children who were on this camp have made. It is a wonderful thing!
It had been a while since I had done something big, and raised some funds for CITW, so when the opportunity presented itself to take on the challenge of getting fit enough to run 100 km in the mountains in four months’ time, I thought there was no way I could say no.
Some people may call me “crazy”, but luckily that means I have crazy friends too! Within five minutes I was able to convince my friend Chris that we absolutely had to take on this challenge, and we also had to make sure that we raised a lot of money for CITW! We work now, and so do all our friends – so in my mind I thought we would now have an even bigger fundraising target market as our friends were no longer on a “varsity budget”.
Chris and I have always talked about, and shared, similar adventure dreams – this includes things like one day summitting Mount Everest – and not only that – but hopefully taking on the “Seven Summits”.
Skyrun marks the first big adventure Chris and I will take on as friends, but not the last. We both look forward to an exciting future of crazy adventures – but adventures for good – as I believe we will continue to use our craziness to support and raise awareness and funds for CITW for many years to come!
Find out more and enter the SkyRun here.