Why are we going to be driving around Australia trying to raise awareness and funds for Lifeline Australia and mindDog Australia?
Paul is suffering from severe depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder and suicidal thoughts. Paul has been exposed to significant events that have got him to where he is now mentally and emotionally. We want to spread the word about the great work these organisations do. We hope that the information that we provide to people whilst on our Journey will encourage them to seek help instead of taking the suicide route. We want to save as many lives as possible so we have decided to travel around most of Australia. We want people to know that it is ok to talk about how they are feeling.
Lifeline is literally saving lives each and every day of the year and they are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. They have extremely qualified staff/volunteers that people who are struggling can talk to or message. They can help people to see that there are other options available to them instead of suicide.
mindDog assists people like Paul to get out into the community again. They help train Mental Health Assistance Dogs (MHAD). Paul’s dog Luna is a MHAD who is really helping him to try to live a more normal life. Luna senses when Paul is starting to get overwhelmed and either distracts, comforts or grounds him. It doesn’t matter if it is in the middle of the night, Luna responds to Paul’s needs. When Paul is asleep and having a nightmare Luna will climb up onto the bed and either wake Paul or lays next to him. We want the community to learn more about MHADs and to understand how the dogs help their humans.
Why are we trying to get Sponsorship for a vehicle, an off-road camper-trailer, for fuel and for camera and other electrical items instead of paying for all of it ourselves?
We would happily pay for everything ourselves if we had the finances to do so, but unfortunately Paul has not been able to work since the start of July, so we have had to use our savings to help pay the bills. The Sponsorship items that we are trying to secure will enable us to get out into Australia’s communities, large and small. Some of the items that we receive through Sponsorship will be sold at the end of the event, with all money raised through the sales going to the Beneficiaries.
Why a vehicle and fuel? We had a vehicle that we were preparing to take with us, however it was identified during this process that the engine needs more work than can be justified for a vehicle of its age, so now the only vehicle we have is one that we have rented for the next few weeks. Hopefully we can secure a vehicle sponsor in the next week or two so that it is one less stress on Paul. We anticipate fuel will cost us around $20,000 for the event.
Why an off-road camper trailer? We are extremely grateful to have 3Dog Camping as one of our Sponsors and really look forward to having the high quality rooftop fitted onto our vehicle (once we have a vehicle), but with our 4 kids, we still need a camper trailer to sleep some of us and to provide a place to cook and eat meals, to store our equipment etc. We will be living out of the roof top tent and camper trailer for more than 8 months as it will be cheaper than paying for motel rooms.
Why photographic and other electrical items? We want to ensure that the discussions we start whilst on our journey don’t stop once the event stops, so we want to document what happens utilising Photo’s and Video’s. We need to purchase the laptops so that our children can continue their schooling whilst we are travelling around. It is a requirement of the School of Isolated and Distance Education that the kids enrolled have their own computer to do their school work.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us on DrivingOzBlackDog@gmail.com or 0427 388 168.