Page 137 of 365: Ecuador Expedition!



I’ve mentioned in passing (I think) that this summer I’m going on an expedition to Ecuador in South America and I figured I should probably explain it all in a little more detail!

The header photo, as shown in the date in the bottom right hand corner, was taken in the summer of 2013 when I went on an expedition to Tanzania with Camps International. Camps International are a company organising expeditions to countries like Kenya, Borneo and Peru (amongst many others) to help those less fortunate there and witness some of the most incredible things that the world has to offer.

When I went to Tanzania, it was for a month long expedition to build houses, aid animal conservation and help the locals with farming. I also got the opportunity to learn to scuba dive (I didn’t finish the qualification because I was ill, unfortunately), go on safari and learn a little bit of Swahili! I wish I could remember more of the language but I can say without a shadow of a doubt that the first day on Safari when our truck was completely surrounded by a heard of elephants was one of the best days of my life – I love elephants, I’m completely obsessed with the beautiful creatures and I’m so lucky and fortunate to have seen them so up close and personal.

In Ecuador I’ll be doing a very similar trip (I imagine) – I’ll be working with the locals, learning a bit of Spanish and going to visit the Galapagos Islands! Now that I blog and make YouTube videos, the trip will be so much more eye opening because alongside living it and having one of the best times of my life, I’ll be capturing content to bring back.

I get back from this expedition on Wednesday August 12th (at 7am, my first experience with jet lag is going to be… interesting), my A Level results day is on the 13th and the 14th – 16th I’m going to YouTube convention Summer In The City in London.

I’m going to a YouTube convention having been without the internet for the month prior. Interesting.

But back to travelling – these expeditions aren’t cheap, and Camps Internationals idea is that they work with schools, encouraging those that sign up to fund raise the money themselves. I’ll be the first to admit that whilst I raised about £1000 for my expedition to Tanzania, I owe my parents about £3000 (I’ve promised them the deposit from my first book, or however publishing works). Ecuador is slightly different – I’ve already worked for about £1000 but this expedition is more expensive.

I’m really lucky in that my parents would rather I focused on getting decent grades in my A Level exams and got into Uni than focused on fundraising but I’ve had my page open on GoFundMe for about six months – it’s been the first link at the bottom of every blog post for 137 days now and unfortunately no one’s used it.

This is the tricky bit where I try to explain the purpose of the page without sounding like I’m asking you for money – the page was a background project I guess, open for my friends and family to donate if they liked or for anyone to suggest a kind of sponsored challenge I could do to earn a bit more money. I made this post on my tumblr when I set up the page to explain it a bit more and I also made this video: 

I’m up for anything from wearing a silly costume to a concert (i.e. 5SOS on June 6th), making a challenge YouTube video or writing a personal story for a small donation – whatever ideas you have for whatever money you can spare!

I don’t want you to feel compelled to give me money!

Do the bold, italics and underline make it clear enough? I’m going to stop asking for money now!

Another purpose of the trip, I guess, is to disconnect today’s technology-obsessed generation away from their beloved laptops for a bit. I thought this was something I’d struggle with in Tanzania but I didn’t, I had my iPod and my camera and whilst I did miss my phone in the airport on the way out, I only remembered it existed halfway home from Heathrow a month later!

But being away from technology means I can’t make videos or upload blog posts daily. I’m going to have to write at least 28 blog posts and make at least 4 videos to schedule to upload while I’m gone. This task is more daunting than the fundraising itself – I know I’ve already written 137 blog posts but writing enough to have 28 for while I’m gone is going to be a challenge.

My mum is going to monitor my emails and social medias while I’m gone in case I miss anything really major (regarding university, apprenticeships and Summer in the City, mainly) and last time, she followed the Camps twitter and found a few photos of me – she thinks it would be sweet to add messages onto my blog posts while I’m gone. So I’m going to teach her how to add pictures, so you guys will be updated with what’s going on with me and reassured that I’ve not completely disappeared off the face of the Earth!

I hope you kind of understand the whole purpose of the expedition and what will happen when I’m gone a bit more now – if you have any idea for those 28 blog posts or any more questions about the expedition, please leave them in the comments!

Thank you for reading,

Sophie xx

That’s where you’ll find me:
My GoFundMe Page for my trip to Ecuador:
Snapchat: @SophieALuckett

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