There are a few parts to this story. A few years ago, I came up with an idea wondering if I could raise a million dollars for a worthwhile cause. Like many great ideas, it languished and went nowhere. Recently I got to thinking DON'T DIE WONDERING IF YOU CAN DO IT. Get on with the job - do something - get started. So this is the first step on the Don't Die Wondering Journey.

Also recently, I went to a breakfast meeting and the speaker said, “It’s all very well having goals, you should also have some adventure in your life”. Here I am 71 and have a great wife, Pam and three fantastic kids and six wonderful grandkids. Family and life is ticking along ok. BUT with very little adventure.

Pam and I love walking and go for a hike somewhere virtually every weekend, on the beach, through parks and sometimes deep into the hills. A cousin of mine, Malcom McBride (69) also loves walking and we often go for a long hike up to 20ks to some awesome places. Malcom has been to Base Camp on Mount Everest four times and for some time he has been on my case to go with him and his wife (Barbara 66 and has been to Base Camp once).

Malcom has been on my case to go with him on his next 15 day hike up to the 18 000 feet base camp. He had been continually planting all the wonderful experiences that the adventure entails. Once I made my mind up the planning began. Buying the right gear, learning all about the journey. Slowly the flip side of the coin started to be revealed - As you go up in height the air thins and we are breathing with 50% oxygen as to what we have here, our pace of walking is slower than slow and we can only do 6 or 7 ks a day. Many people get altitude sickness and have to be Helicoptered out.

When I started discussing this adventure with friends and family there was very little encouragement. It went from People die doing this, to, on a kind note, you are completely mad. Undaunted I have locked in to go.
Along the way, I wanted to find a worthwhile charity that might benefit from what we are endeavouring to achieve. An old saying says, if you keep looking you will find what you are looking for. Well I kept looking and I found it.


The Sanctuary for Women and Children is in a two-acre peaceful setting on the Gold Coast. It has been establish by Simone Patterson and her husband Neil. Simone is a lady dedicated to providing refuge for those who are victims of domestic violence and need somewhere to go immediately after the violent separation.
You can learn all about Simone, the Sanctuary and the work carried out on http://sanctuaryrefuge.com.au

Here is an exert from the site.
Did you know that over 3,000 people are living on the streets of the Gold Coast and Brisbane? Many are women and children who are victims of domestic violence. They have no place to go, nowhere safe to sleep and no support to help them to rebuild their lives. Every 3 minutes someone in Australia calls police about Domestic Violence.

Domestic Violence is at epidemic proportions and rising. While there are a myriad of issues within this rampant scourge, where do we start? How do you eat an Elephant in the room? Simple; one bite at a time.

So my small bite is to strive to raise a million dollars over the next few years and in some small way make a difference.

There are seven self-contained compact units for families to gain the refuge they need while they get sorted with some new direction. They are permitted to stay up to three months. MORE UNITS ARE NEEDED

This part of my Don’t Die Wondering Journey is to raise $20 000.00 with it all going to the Sanctuary toward the need segment of much needed housing.

I invite you to join me on the adventure and make a donation for the Sanctuary. Our Facebook page will keep you informed as to progress leading up to and during the great adventure.

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Paddy Sweeney 
Southern Lamington QLD
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