For 10 years Kim Wildman has been travelling the world and writing about her adventures.
She has authored and updated more than 15 guide books, including the renowned Lonely Planet and Bradt, and has written countless features and travel articles for newspapers and magazines, both in Australia and overseas.
Now the Bangalow adventurer wants to give something back to the countries and the industry where she has gained so much pleasure and joy.
In May Kim will embark on a two-week cycling challenge in Cambodia in an effort to raise money for War Child Australia – a charity providing education and support to children affected by war.
“I want to promote more ethical and positive forms of travel,” Kim said.
“I’ve just returned from my most recent work assignment in Ghana where I was both deeply heartened and deeply saddened by the state of tourism there.
“I was privileged to have had the opportunity to visit the village of Mognori, which has just launched a new eco-tourism project where travellers can experience a little of rural life through homestays and local tours.
“Each member of the community earns an allowance from the money generated by this tourism.
“But not more than 11 kilometres away in the town of Larabanga, tourism has created anger and division within the community, with local guiding factions fighting over tourist dollars.”
However, Kim said that when tourism was done well, it could benefit both the community and those who visit it.
Kim has been training hard for the cycling tour with a 20km bike ride every day and some running.
She hopes to build up to 70km a day.
“It won’t be easy. Cambodia is very hot and humid so I need to be really fit,” Kim said.
Kim also needs to raise $6900 for the trip – half of which will go to cover costs and the other half to War Child Australia. (It’s hoped the eight-person cycling team will raise $50,000 for the charity).
To help her raise the money, Kim has organised a travel photography contest to be held at the Bangalow A & I Hall on March 25. Called ‘People and Places’, the contest is open to photographers of all ages.
Kim said the contest has already received great support with a variety of fantastic prizes on offer.
There are three categories including primary (up to 11 years); secondary (12 to 17) and open (18 and over).
Entries cost $5 and photographs must be submitted in print form and should be mounted on black mount board or strong black cardboard and must not exceed 30cm x 40cm.
Entries are to be marked with name, age, address and phone number and should be sent to Attn: Kim Wildman, PO Box 611, Bangalow, 2479.
The $5 entry fee can made by cash, cheque or money order.
Entries close on March 24.
The contest will culminate in a fundraising exhibition/auction when winners will be announced.
For more information phone Kim on 0400887991 or email email@example.com
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