Oxfam Trailwalker 2019: New finish point and experts shared training tips at briefing
Oxfam Trailwalker (OTW), Hong Kong’s largest hiking fundraiser, will be held from 15 to 17 November 2019. In teams of four, participants must trek hills and mountains along the 100 km MacLehose Trail and other trails within 48 hours. Oxfam Hong Kong (OHK) reminded walkers today that OTW 2019 will start in Pak Tam Chung, Sai Kung, and end at a new finish point: Chu Hai College of Higher Education in Tuen Mun. The new route is more challenging than the previous route (Pak Tam Chung to Tai Tong in Yuen Long) as it is about one kilometre longer and consists of more uphill paths and uneven steps. OHK also said that in order to encourage an eco-friendly OTW, each walker will be given a new reusable cutlery set this year (which includes a cutlery wrap, fork, spoon, wide and narrow straw, and straw brush).
The theme this year is ‘Ordinary People Doing the Extraordinary’. A total of 1,300 teams, or 5,200 walkers, will embark on the trail this year. Almost 300 walkers attended the OTW briefing session today where experts shared medical and other useful advice with walkers. Brenda Wong, Fundraising Manager (Events) of OHK also encouraged walkers to download the newly-launched ‘Infinity Walker’ mobile app. Through it, users can complete running and hiking missions to earn points and redeem rewards on behalf of individuals or teams. One hundred OTW team quotas were given to the first 100 people who installed the app and completed the designated missions successfully when it was first launched earlier.
Kenneth Wu, OTW chief medical commander and Associate Consultant at the Accident and Emergency Department of Queen Elizabeth Hospital, reminded participants to train adequately and undergo a pre-participation (cardiac risk) assessment beforehand. He also shared tips on treating common medical problems, including exhaustion, foot blisters and muscle cramps. Frank Hung, from the Hong Kong Physiotherapy Association – Sports Specialty Group, explained how to deal with hiking injuries and gave physiotherapy tips. Vivien Cheng, Director of Community Partnership of the Green Earth, shared her advice on how participants could help make the event greener this year.
Frankie Tong and Suzanne Liu, experienced Super Trailwalkers, whose fastest finishing times are 16 hrs and 12 mins, and 16 hrs and 42 mins respectively, also shared their trailwalking tips and experience with walkers and support teams. Tong said, ‘The arduous journey has made me realise just how small I am, but with the understanding, communication and unity of our team, I realised that I can also be strong and extraordinary.’ Liu added, ‘Endurance and being understanding are essential to making things work as a team. OTW not only changes your life but also those of vulnerable communities around the world.’
Since OHK first held the OTW in 1986, close to 100,000 walkers have participated in the event and have successfully raised a total of close to HK$600 million. The fundraising target of OTW 2019 is HK$32 million, which will be used to support OHK’s global poverty alleviation, disaster relief and policy advocacy work, including the support for smallholder farmers in developing countries.
About the OTW
The OTW (previously called ‘Trailwalker’) began in Hong Kong in 1981 as a military training exercise for the elite Queen’s Gurkha Signals Regiment. In 1986, OHK was invited to co-organise the event and in the same year, the event was open to the public. Along with the retreat of the Gurkhas in 1997, OHK took over the event. Through the years, the OTW has become the largest fundraising and hiking event in Hong Kong. It will be held in 14 cities – including Hong Kong – this year.
Oxfam is a worldwide development organisation that mobilises the power of people against poverty.
For media enquiries, please contact:
Oxfam Hong Kong
Phone: (852) 3120 5201 / (852) 6749 6230
Assistant Communications Officer
Oxfam Hong Kong
Phone: (852) 3120 5174 / (852) 9319 1077