When Capetonian Andrew Patterson was retrenched it appeared his world had come tumbling down round him, however as a substitute of curling up in a heap of despair, he walked up Desk Mountain day by day for a yr to lift cash for charity.
Talking after taking a while out after his closing stroll on Dec 31, Patterson instructed Information24 that when he heard the axe was going to fall at his job at a giant beverage firm, he was terrified.
“It was nerve wracking. It was the worst time of my life,” mentioned Patterson.
Deep down he knew he was not getting anymore satisfaction out of the company world, however he was caught in a cycle of simply working to maintain his wage.
To fill his soul he had began volunteering for charities, and had spent the earlier three years main small teams up the mountain in his spare time.
Caught in visitors close to the Good Hope Centre, with eight days left to closing severance in 2017, he had an epiphany.
He determined he was going to stroll up Desk Mountain day by day, and he was going to get folks to sponsor him for charity whereas he did it.
He was additionally going to attempt to get folks to see South Africa and one another with out negativity.
As a result of he had labored for a very long time, he acquired a retrenchment package deal and had financial savings that he might dwell off if he managed his cash rigorously.
Walked by rain, scorching warmth and pumping wind
“I additionally removed lots of issues – you realize, these issues round the home that you simply carry round each time you progress however you by no means use,” he mentioned.
He additionally modified his life-style to maintain himself afloat financially.
“I assumed: ‘If you happen to squander all of your cash you’ll spend your life in debt and you’ll by no means be capable to do it’.”
And so, from January 1, 2018, he walked up Platteklip Gorge day by day.
He arrange a BackaBuddy web page, and solicited donations for 3 charities from individuals who needed to stroll with him – Habitat for Humanity, the Sunflower Fund and One Coronary heart for Youngsters.
By the top, he raised R367 000 by his problem which he referred to as “365 UbuntuClimbs” and despite the fact that his one yr quest has stopped, individuals are nonetheless donating in direction of his aim of elevating R1m.
BackaBuddy mentioned that to this point, books have been supplied for 3 of the Western Cape’s poorest faculties in Stellenbosch, Klapmuts and Kayamandi for the One Coronary heart for Youngsters programme.
By way of Habitat for Humanity, 10 households residing in shacks in Baphumelele, Khayelitsha had their properties upgraded to be drier, safer and hotter.
Patterson was additionally concerned in two donor drives for the Sunflower Fund that added 30 donors to their registry of stem cell donors to assist folks preventing blood ailments like leukemia.
He walked by rain, scorching warmth, and the pumping Cape City wind.
He additionally saved a video diary which he posted on Fb detailing his bodily, emotional and religious journey.
He mentioned it was heartwarming to see folks from all walks of life and ranges of health make their means up the gorge with him, and he in a short time discovered that he had grow to be much less judgemental and extra accepting of individuals.
He watched folks push themselves past their very own capabilities, which he discovered very humbling and provoking. He mentioned he additionally skilled ubuntu in abundance from the 8-year-old to the 73-year-old who walked with him.
A spotlight was strolling with Lifa Hlongwa, who had been instructed he would by no means stroll once more after a rugby damage. Hlongwa proved his medical doctors incorrect by working arduous on the Sports activities Science Institute and strolling along with his crutches with Patterson.
Patterson’s motto on his weblog is: “When you’ve got the chance to do superb issues in your life, deliver somebody with you.”
In considered one of his vlogs (video blogs) he says the important thing to success is self-belief and despite the fact that there have been days he didn’t assume he would make it, he put one foot in entrance of the opposite and carried on.
So what now for the person who calls himself a “deep thinker”?
He plans to spend time along with his girlfriend Jessie Smith, who’s from San Francisco within the US, and hopes to journey there to share his experiences and the life classes he realized.
He’ll proceed with the talks he began giving at faculties and golf equipment and can write a e-book primarily based on his day by day strolling journal.