On 12th April 2019, we are heading to India to drive top to bottom in a tuktuk to raise funds for Farmstrong!
We (Nikki Brown, Natalie Lindsay and Gina McKenzie) are three kiwi lasses hailing from paddocks of New Zealand’s most luscious, fertile farming region - the mighty Southland. All three of us work in jobs which are part of NZ's agricultural industry, with the team comprising of a dairy farmer, a farm consultant and a process engineer. While reminiscing in Nat’s current home city of Hamilton/The Tron of our glory days of working and travelling in Europe, a few lemonades were consumed and we decided we needed a break from our important day jobs that, depending on who you ask, we approach with extremely high levels of dedication.
This led to a serious discussion on entering the Rickshaw Run- traversing 3000km from the one end of India to the other in a poorly (or not at all) serviced 7 horsepower tuk-tuk which boasts top speeds of 50km/hour (downhill). Not only will we be battling marginal road surfaces and the aftermath of strong curries, we will be racing other teams to raise money for our chosen charities. There was no question that this was just what the doctor ordered, so over a nutritiously greasy fry-up the next morning, we sealed the deal and signed up online.
The decision to choose Farmstrong as our charity was made with the same speed and enthusiasm that cows approach a new Swede break. Farmstrong is an organisation that supports mental well-being amongst the farming community, and with all of us growing up in farming families in rural areas, we realise the toll that farming’s isolation, stress and unpredictability can take on mental health. Between us, we know and respect heaps of people that have chosen farming as their job and livelihood, and we are keen to support them in this way so farmers can feel as comfortable yarning about their mental well-being at the pub as they do discussing how much rain they’ve had or how the lambing beat is going. We also love the way that NZ’s farming network always comes together with enthusiasm and support, and we hope you all enjoy following our journey!