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How can you travel with more purpose? What does that even mean? More and more, people from all walks of life are giving back in unique and personal ways via their travel.

Whether a Coincidence or a Trend…It’s Inspiring Nonetheless

It’s funny how sometimes you see a pattern or witness similar activities or actions too coincidental to not be inspired. First, it was meeting a couple that launched an online social campaign to raise money and awareness by hitch hiking to FreedomXFest. By creating a platform called Freedom Box, they are supporting Street Child, a UK-based NGO. Their mission is to provide families with business grants and loans to set-up or grow a sustainable business.

Then not even a few days after that, my good friend Ed Pizza told me about a crazy thing he wanted to do: Ride all 49 attractions at all four Walt Disney World theme parks. Apparently it’s called the Parkeology Challenge. His motivation? Not the mini trophy (though that’s pretty rad) but to raise money for Give Kids the World.

What I Love The Most About Travel

What I love the most about travel is how people do it so differently. It’s truly an expression of that individual. How they plan, where they go, what they do. Sure, there’s a privilege that allows for folks like these to travel as they do. What’s really amazing, though is that they’ve all decided to give back via the intention of purposeful travel.

It’s something that really has made a recent impact in how I’ve begun to view the lifestyle of someone always on the road. There can be times where yes, it’s lonely or isolating. As with anything if you do too much of it, you can easy become jaded or forget the blessing that ease of movement and ability to travel is.

Just like training for a marathon (or maybe a dance-a-thon), raising funds by taking on a crazy challenge or choosing an unconventional method of travel requires some sacrifice and dedication. The willingness to see it through and the ability to move your schedule or cover the cost of additional travel expenses can be a challenge.  I’ve got a GREAT example and four awesome tips on how to use points and miles to capitalize on every day point earning activity and maximize loyalty program matches and benefits or award bookings when on a budget.

Parkeology Challenge Take Two

I wasn’t quite sure what Ed was up to as I cheered him on from afar during his first attempt to complete the Parkeology Challenge. Turns out he was not just doing it for fun, but to train for a “main event”! While working with his friend Summer Hull (AKA Mommy Points and the Editor of TPG Family) on a Disney related project, they discovered the Parkeology challenge. He thought she was joking when she said that she’d be interesting in giving it a try. Turns out, she wasn’t.

Together they are seeking pledges of $1 per ride (or more) as they attempt to raise $50,000 by hitting all 49 rides in one day.

About Give Kids the World

What started as the dream of a Florida hotelier to help some families in need has developed into an immense operation.

Give Kids The World Village opened in 1989, and is now an 84-acre, nonprofit resort complete with 168 villa accommodations, attractions, restaurants, ice cream shops and events specifically designed for children aged 3-18 with critical illnesses. Over 156,000 families from all 50 states and around the world have stayed with GKTW to the tune of more than 8,000 families per year.

When a family stays with Give Kids the World, they don’t just get a place to sleep. The family’s weeklong dream trip is covered and includes:

  • Accommodations on-site in one of the Village’s fully-accessible villas
  • Donated tickets to all three major theme-park resorts (SeaWorld Orlando, Universal Orlando and Walt Disney World)
  • From GKTW’s partner Walt Disney World, all wish families visiting Give Kids The World receive:
    • Three days of park hopper passes with photo pass included
    • Walt Disney World character meet-and-greets exclusive to wish families twice a week at Give Kids The World
  • Transportation
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner in the GKTW dining area, Café Clayton, along with ice cream available all day in The Ice Cream Palace
  • Many other fun surprises

How You Can Help

Ok, so you might not have a trip coming up soon where you can easily find a way to give back either through raising funds or volunteering. But, I bet you probably have a $1 (or more). Ed and Summer are asking for pledges of $1 per ride, so no more than $49 if they knock out all the attractions. Click here to make a pledge of support.

When you begin to plan your next trip, take a moment to think about what small effort you can take to help make an impact either in the community you’ll be visiting or for a cause that is near and dear to your heart. By simply traveling, exploring or challenging ourselves, each small act of purposeful travel can contribute to the growing impact made.

Do you have an idea for how you can plan a purposeful trip? Have you already started planning one or have done one in the past? We want to hear from you! Email me at mike@coworkaholic.com

The post Purposeful Travel: The Parkeology Challenge was first published on Coworkaholic.