MORE than 600 people trekked 100km through the Perth Hills last weekend and raised $450,000 to help fight poverty around the globe.
Teams of four completed the Oxfam Trailwalker in 48 hours starting in Darlington on Friday and weaving their way through John Forrest National Park, along the railway heritage trail to Chidlow, past Mundaring, Gooseberry Hill National Park and Stirk Park in Kalamunda before finishing in Forrestfield on Sunday.
The Chidlow Volunteer Bush Fire Brigade team, All Fired Up, surpassed their $2000 fundraising goal by $572 and completed the trail in 40 hours.
Team leader Catriona McCarthy said she and teammates Dee Roberts, Gary Rowles and Verity Bignell banded together when physical pain and mental exhaustion kicked in.
“You’ve got to have a good team, when someone is struggling you pitch in and help, you work together,” she said.
“Being volunteer firefighters and knowing each other well and having each other’s back on the fire ground, it was easily implemented on the trail.”
The team members are no strangers to the 100km challenge, having each completed the trail walk up to three times in different team configurations.
They have also spent considerable time getting to know the area through their work with the brigade.
“We call it our Oxfam family,” Ms McCarthy said.
“We would always go for training walks together…It’s nice walking in your own area, you appreciate the beauty of it.”
Kalamunda Bush Fire Brigade also jumped on board with their team of four and raised $4563.
Oxfam Australia event fundraising manager Anna Wemyss said weather conditions in the Hills last weekend were ideal.
“Conditions were perfect out on the trail, which is a big help for our walkers as they take on such an incredible challenge,” she said,
“The amazing thing about Oxfam Trailwalker is that it’s a challenging event, but it’s something that anyone can complete with the right mindset and training.”
Oxfam Australia works with local communities to help them create their own sustainable solutions to tackle poverty around the world.
By Claire Ottaviano