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Fundraising activity for AfrikaBurn on Mt Olympus
What is AfrikaBurn?
AfrikaBurn is a community of creative people who (usually) get together once a year to make art, costumes, performances, theme camps, music, mutant vehicles, and a whole lot more. All of this is made possible by a culture of play, experimentation, volunteerism and giving.
The goal of AfrikaBurn is to be radically inclusive and accessible to everyone. Immediacy will always be the touchstone of value in AfrikaBurn culture. Experience comes before theory, moral relationships before politics, survival before services, roles before jobs, ritual before symbolism, work before vested interest, and participant support before sponsorship …
AfrikaBurn is a really one-of-a-kind event that removes any personal barriers, allowing you to be free and to be yourself, and demonstrating that a better society based on compassion and mutual respect is truly possible.
Who is behind this project?
My name is Lorenzo and I was a proud participant of the AfrikaBurn X edition in 2016. After two and a half years of working on humanitarian projects in Ecuador and Malawi, I had the unique opportunity to take part in this wonderful experiment in the desert, while travelling through Cape Town. What I lived during that incredible week in the dust completely changed my view of the world. It was truly a inspirational experience that helped me to realize my inner self. All the beautiful souls I met, the moments, the Burns, the life lessons, the parties, the sunsets and the magical feelings will stay with me forever. In many ways, the person I woke up the day after Tankwa Town is still the person who I am today.
What is the Olympus 12 Refuge Trail
Mount Olympus is the highest mountain in Greece and believed to be home of the 12 Olympian Gods. The idea to do a solo trek on the mountain came last year, during the first lockdown. I was eager to do something that would reconnect me with nature, far away from the city. In some ways, all I needed was a reset, just like the one I had at AfrikaBurn.
The idea for the Olympus 12 Refuge Trail (12RT) emerged on Mt Olympus, at the “Petrostrouga” refuge. The organized shelter is managed by the NGO Hellenic Rescue Team (HRT), the organisation I have volunteered at since I was a student. One morning, while checking the hiking map, I realized that most shelters are linked somehow by well-established hiking trails. With the assistance of the refuge manager, we tried to find the optimum course that would allow visiting as many shelters as possible. Once the owner of the cartographic company (of that same map where the initial idea came from) heard about the concept, helped us enthusiastically to design a course that would pass from the 12 most famous shelters of the Mountain of the Gods.
The route would take me through every part of Mt Olympus, especially places mostly unknown to the wider mountaineering and international community. Having the Camino de Santiago (and Tankwa Camino) as a point of reference, we intended this trail to serve as a pilgrimage to the mythical mountain and to all what it represents for Greek mythology and world history.
The project was also accompanied by a fundraising campaign to raise awareness of the mountain rescue volunteers. As a ham radio enthusiast (callsign: SV2SDP), I had the chance to install many VHF/UHF repeaters and antennas for the organisation. HRT’s radio network permits the emergency telecommunication in every angle of Mt Olympus, especially in places where there is no mobile signal. I was very confident that, if it was to do this hike by myself, there would be someone to hear my call, in case of an emergency.
Indeed, on the 22nd of September 2020, I took the long solo trek from the Boudolas Refuge. 14 days, 10 shelters and 100km later, I finished at the Agapitos refuge. My knees were hurting badly, I was exhausted, almost dehydrated, had no shower for weeks… yet the emotions I felt arriving at the 12th and final shelter could only be compared with the sentiment of watching the Lotus at the Silent Burn.
This year, I am planning to do the course again with some fellow hikers. Similar to last year, the effort will be accompanied by a fundraising campaign, this time I have decided to support AfrikaBurn in its quest for continuance after two events (2019, 2020) were cancelled due to the pandemic. The good news came few weeks ago that an event is due for 2022 with a smaller number of participants. However, in these difficult times, the splendid community of AfrikaBurn needs every help it can get to keep bringing the Burn alive for many more years to come.
Connection between AfrikaBurn and hiking on Mt Olympus
AfrikaBurn is an event that is operated and accepts people under a number of principles, just like hiking on Mt Olympus. Even though set in very different environments, the special energy of these two places is something unique. The mythos and legends of Mt Olympus are a perfect match with the spiritual identity of AfrikaBurn and they both share many fundamental ethical rules and common characteristics.
Radical Self Reliance: In Tankwa Town, a participant needs to come fully organised and rely primarily to his/her own self to cope with the desert. Similarly on the mountain, a hiker relies on his/her own equipment, internal force and is fully responsible for what is brought in the backpack.
Communal Effort: When hiking in a group, any difficulties that may occur are faced together as a team.
Gifting: Although there are products to buy at the organized refuges, everyone helps each other with water and snacks during hiking. At the emergency shelters, the supplies are shared among the hikers. Anything not used while staying there is left as a gift to the next visitor.
Leave No Trace: Just as in AfrikaBurn, the first rule on the mountain is to leave nothing behind that might give even the smallest evidence of your presence.
Each One Teach One: In the desert every experienced Burner passes their knowledge to any newcomer seeking for help. Similarly, on Mt Olympus an experienced climber instructs the secrets of the mountain hiking to anyone new at the sport.
See more on AfrikaBurn guiding principles here: https://www.afrikaburn.com/about/guiding-principle...
Lack of any mobile signal: With the exception of VHF radio, both places offer a complete disconnection from the digital world, which nowadays is rarely found around the world.
Connection with nature: “Deserts are designed by God so a man can find his soul” an old Tuareg proverb is saying. Just as in the desert, hiking in the rich diverse nature of Mt Olympus allows you to connect with your inner self, come closer to Mother Earth, go over your limits, and experience the magical energy of the mythical mountain.
Even the smallest contributions can help to make a difference. Starting with one Euro, you can help keeping the Burning Man ideal alive for everyone.
And for those who decide to donate higher amounts there are plenty of gifts to choose!
- 3 post cards
- 5 post cards
- Hiking t-shirt
- Neck warmer (Buff)
- Mt Olympus Map
- 12 Refuge Trail passport
- 3h DIY skype call
And combinations of the above!
Please note that direct shipping can only be offered for destinations in Europe. However, we are in communication with AfrikaBurn to offer the option of delivery at your next visit to Tankwa Town!
All the donations made to this fundraiser (minus the GoGetFunding platform costs, social media costs and gifting costs) will be directly donated to the AfrikaBurn non-profit organization. There is no cost for AfrikaBurn with this fundraiser, only their blessing and support with this initiative to get as many donations as possible!
I have already started my Olympus 12 Refuge Trail trek, in support of AfrikaBurn and I’ll be sharing updates with you and the rest of the community as I undertake my journey to the lap of the Gods. I encourage you to get behind me and support AfrikaBurn to help others find a different way to look at themselves, nature and each other.Please find out more here:
3 Card Postals
5 card Postals
Buff 12 Refuge Trail
T-shirt 12 Refuge Trail
Olympus Hiker Passport
T-shirt - Buff
2h Skype with me for DIY hike on Mt Olympus
T-shirt - Olympus Map
Olympus Map - Hiker Passport
Tshirt - Buff - Olympus Map
Tshirt - Buff - Olympus Map - Hiker Passport
Tshirt - Buff - Olympus Map - Hiker Passport - DIY Video call
- Brian Palmer
- Content creator and promoter
No updates for this campaign just yet