Success for Australian Kokoda Tours LIVIN Charity trekkers

Mark (left), Luke (middle), Dave (right) with Australian Kokoda Tours porters, April 2019.

Mark (left), Luke (middle), Dave (right) with Australian Kokoda Tours porters, April 2019.

Australian Kokoda Tours is proud to support trekkers who take on the Kokoda challenge for a charity or cause. Luke Mawson who is 16 years old, his dad Dave, and Mark Otte took part in our 2019 Anzac Day trek, raising funds and awareness for youth mental health charity, LIVIN.

Luke exceeded his goal of raising $3,000 via his Everyday Hero page, which today has a donation total of $3,418.14. Mark’s Everyday Hero page raised an incredible $13,053.01, bringing the total raised by our trekkers to $16,471.15!

LIVIN work to break down the stigma of mental health, encouraging people to start a conversation “which could potentially save someone’s life”. Their mission is to help promote positive living for young people through awareness and early education, and to make mental health relatable.

The tragic suicide of Luke’s 16-year-old friend two years ago sparked a desire in him to want to raise awareness about mental health and youth suicide.

Luke said in a CQ News article that he would like to see the community get more involved in mental health.

"I try to get the youth involved in what I'm doing as much as I can, especially in a small place like Moranbah where there isn't much to do… I realised that kids even as young as seven or eight can be struggling.”

CQ News said Luke would like “… to see more talks or seminars providing information to young people and families in the region as well as extended mental health support services being made available in schools.”

Mark decided to trek for LIVIN because he wanted to make a difference.

Mark is an ex-soldier, and says that he “…wanted to spread the word about the mental issues that young men have to go through in today’s times.

“I'm inspired by the work of LIVIN… The more people that know about LIVIN, the greater their impact...”

From all of us at Australian Kokoda Tours, congratulations Luke and Mark for not only your amazing fundraising efforts, but for speaking up on an extremely important topic and for starting a conversation about youth mental health. It was a pleasure having you trek with us, and we’re so proud to have been able to support you and LIVIN.

If you need mental health support or know someone who does, contact Lifeline on 131 114.