Right. Time to get in your face with conscience-troubling charity efforts again.
As you know, my sisters run this thing called the Moldova Project. If you don’t know about this, humour me and pretend you do. It’s a charity which supports people in Moldova, one of the poorest countries in Europe. One of the things it does is, though sponsorship, provide food/bedding/all sorts of other essentials for families in this desperate, but not-glamorous-enough-to-be-on-TV-much, area. Thanks to the fact that my ‘fans’ are the most generous people in comedy, apart from the people who keep re-commissioning (SHOW DELETED TO AVOID TROUBLE FROM AGENTS), several Molodvans’ lives have been substantially improved through appeals on this very site. The four Watson siblings ran a half-marathon for Moldova in 2010, and last year I donated the profits from my DVD show to them.
So, here is a renewed bid for help. As I always say on these occasions, you can quite justifiably not get involved in this, because you don’t have much spare money. I’m just putting it in the public domain so that, even if you can’t help financially, you might possibly contact a person who CAN. That’s the good thing about the Internet. There’s always someone who can do everything.
My sister Emma, and a bunch of committed volunteers, are walking the length of the Thames to raise money. It’s well over 100 miles. The final 21 miles, from Chertsey to the London Eye, will be next Friday and I am going to walk it with them. But they’ve already started and they are having a fairly shit time. The trouble with something like ‘walking the Thames Path’ is that it’s not as glamorous as some of the charity ventures people go for – walking the Great Wall of China, building a school in the Andes – but it is equally difficult. So you have a harder time attracting press coverage or sponsorship, and yet you’re still just as knackered and have just as many holes in your shoes. And don’t even have cool pictures of yaks or anything to show people.
My brother (yeah, the one who did the football thing) (yep, the one who I do the football blog with) (well, I’ve only got one brother) walked two days with them this week, and he reported that it was basically quite unpleasant. On both Wednesday and Thursday they did about 15 miles, in heat extreme enough that my sister Emma got sunstroke, and yet through land so boggy from recent rain that they also all got blisters/chilblains/etc from having to take off their boots and paddle through puddles as deep as the Suez Canal. Describing the walk as the ‘Thames Path’ suggests that there is an actual nice path you can follow, as if you were walking a popular rambling route, but for long stretches there isn’t any such thing: you’re just wading through someone’s private field, scrambling through gorse, having a breakdown, etc.
So. Emma and co have another week of this nonsense before I join in. Even when I join in, there’s 21 miles to walk in a single day. I’d be mightily obliged if you would sponsor me to do it. Or sponsor them to keep doing it, since they’re going to have a very very long week. The link, however you couch your sponsorship, is the same:
…that should be it, hopefully.
Even if you just pledged a quid, it would make a morale difference to this small team of people who are hacking their way through a thorn bush even as we speak, but without the kudos of someone like David Walliams. I am no Walliams. But I hope to be the bridge between the general public and this enormous endeavour for Eastern Europe.