Zena signed up to leading poverty charity CARE International’s ‘Walk in her shoes’ initiative, supported by the Co-operative Membership, and will walk 10,000 steps (around 5 miles) a day for one week while raising vital funds to help those living in poverty.
Zena, of Colton Street, said: “I am currently on a mission to get fit and have lost half a stone already, but I felt walking was a good way of maintaining my fitness. I thought if I'm going to walk, what better than to do it for a worthy cause and funds! I'm in awe of these women who have to battle every day to walk for miles to get water, something we take for granted. No-one can understand what they go through unless they have been in a similar situation. This challenge is nowhere near what they go through, but by doing it I hope to raise awareness of their struggle and how people can help make life a little easier for them. ”
Women in some developing countries carry an average load of 20 kg at a time in water and firewood– the equivalent to the UK’s average luggage allowance. Collecting water, firewood and other basic necessities are responsibilities that usually fall upon women and girls in the developing world. This leaves little time to attend school, access health services or earn money to support their families.
CARE International’s Head of Challenge, Neil Munro, said: “Poverty is keeping women and girls from fulfilling their potential. Tasks which take seconds in the UK can mean backbreaking work in poor communities and much of this responsibility is borne by women and girls. Tasks which keep girls from attending school and women from paid work come at a high cost, trapping generations in a cycle of poverty. We’re grateful to Zena for her support- the funds she raises could help CARE build a village water pump, to save women and girls a gruelling daily walk.”
Zena joins hundreds of CARE supporters from the UK, Canada and Australia who will all be walking for CARE this March. She hopes to incorporate more walking in her existing activities: “I'm going to start in the morning at work and not stop until 5pm. In the evenings, I intend to go out walking around Leicester city centre, where I live, and out in the countryside at the weekend. People who know me know that I am not the most active person around but because I'm motivated by this cause, I know it will keep me going.”
Zena hopes to encourage other women from Leicester to ‘Walk in her shoes’. Visit www.careinternational.org.uk/walkinhershoes Or call 020 7091 6111 or email email@example.com.
About CARE International
CARE is one of the world’s leading aid agencies, fighting poverty and injustice in 87 countries around the world and helping some of the world’s poorest people find routes out of poverty. CARE’s mission is to create lasting change in poor communities and put money where it is needed most: 94 pence in every pound goes towards our poverty fighting programmes. That’s one of the highest rates among all the UK aid agencies. Taking part in sponsored events like this charity walk is just one of the ways that CARE raises these vital funds.
About the Co-operative
The Co-operative Group is the UK’s largest mutual business, owned not by private shareholders but by almost six million consumers. The Co-operative is doing more than ever to help tackle global poverty. Through co-operative support, ethical trade, ethical finance and campaigning, their work has benefited millions of people across the developing world. To learn more about becoming a member and helping to ensure lasting change, please visit www.co-operative.coop/membership