UK expat, John Dean, recently travelled through Coonabarabran, more than halfway on his 2000 kilometre journey across three states to raise awareness for mental health and the charity, beyondblue.
Pulling two trailers laden with supplies, which at their heaviest weigh 90 kilograms, John set off from Adelaide on 5 April.
Averaging 30-35km a day, he reached Coonabarabran on Thursday, 24 May and hoped to make the Sunshine Coast by 10 June.
After experiencing “technical difficulties” with his trailer tyres four kilometres south of Coonabarabran, John said Barron’s Tyre and Mechanical were able to resolve the situation.
“They picked the trailers up and brought them into town, put me up in a hotel for the night and fixed the wheels, which have been giving me grief for a while now,” John said.
“I’ve received so much generosity in Coonabarabran, I’ll definitely be back again one day to catch up with all the wonderful people who helped me on this journey.” The country hospitality didn’t stop there, with Pilliga Pottery also accommodating John the following night.
John said he enjoyed his time with the Rickert family so much, he found it difficult to leave.
“This place is where dreams come to life,” he said.
“I can’t wait to see what they have created by the time I return.”
John began organising his walk last year, choosing beyondblue as his major charity partner.
“The central ethos of hope, recover and resilience of beyondblue resonates with me in my current personal situation, and likely, with many Australians,” John said.
“I hope to meet many people along the way to share with them the knowledge that organisations like these, and others, are committed to helping people through the journey of anxiety, depression and recovery.
“More than 30 per cent of Australians suffer from these things in their lifetime, and without public support, beyondblue’s dedicated staff and volunteers will not be able to continue their great work.”
Setting a fund-raising goal of $10,000, John has already received $2363 in donations.