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No dampened spirits in the Flight4Life team after a week of rain in Queensland
With all their gear assembled in Queensland and after a solid week of wet weather, the Parajet expedition pilots, Mark Jennings-Bates and Glenn Derouin are ready for take off this coming weekend.
Worongary, Queensland, Australia
While the expedition to set a new Paramotor Distance World Record is running a few days behind, the team spirits remain high!
“For sure we are going to experience a few setbacks like this along the way” said Jennings-Bates, “you come into this kind of a project with eyes wide open. But all the gear is here, the weather looks as though it is going to be favourable for a start in the next few days and so we are very positive about getting on with the task at hand”
For Jennings-Bates and Deruoin, two Canadian pilots, this is the culmination of a few years of preparation.
The two pilots met in 1990 after Jennings-Bates had taken a hiatus from rock climbing and decided he wanted to try his hand at paragliding. For several years, they flew together in the Canadian Rockies before Jennings-Bates’
A few years ago Jennings-Bates approached Derouin about tackling a world record project for charity and as a result, the Flight4Life was born.
Although the pilots have in their minds an ambition to set a new world record, there is an alternative motivation to complete the project.
Each day, nearly 6000 children die from lack of access to safe water, or adequate sanitation, roughly equivalent of 20 Jumbo Jets! “That is a child about every 20 seconds and yet, we do not need to invent a cure, we know the answer” stated Jennings-Bates. His personal goal is raise $4 million for the Rally4Life Foundation, a charitable organisation based in Canada that provides safe water solutions for remote communities as well as funding for schools and orphanages. The flying duo will also be raising awareness and funds for a well knows Australian charity, the Royal Flying Doctor Service. “Everyone tells us what a great organisation they are” said Glenn Deoruin, adding “we have already met many people impacted by the positive service they provide in rural Australia and around the country in general”
As the team heads up to Townsville on February 4th, you will be able to spot their Nissan Patrol and camper with Flight4Life decals on it. “Come and say hello, we love meeting the locals, that is part of the experience” said Jennings-Bates who, along with 80 or so other people including Sir Richard Branson and Lance Armstrong, is also a “Friend of Australia” working with the Tourism Australia initiative to be an advocate for the destination.
Supporters will also be able to follow their progress live on the internet at www.theflight4life.com
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Rally4Life is a charitable foundation that works with adventurers and athletes to raise awareness of poverty challenges around the globe.
Together with their advocates they are raising funds and providing solutions for safe water, orphanages and schools in Africa, Guatemala and Nicaragua.