COLD Night, Warm Hearts – Hike to Help 2018 Adventure
I love a good adventure! And the highest elevation point on the Ouachita Trail (Mount Rich 2,681 ft – not bad for AR) and plummeting temperatures didn’t disappoint! This past weekend our hearty group of backpackers trekked 6 miles (us old guys) and 11 miles (the young guys) along a section of the OT, beginning at the OK border near Talihina, OK and headed east into AR.
In its third year, Hike to Help is a different kind of fund raiser sponsored by Loving Community. It’s purpose is to support the boys mentoring initiatives in the Lewisville ISD. This year’s hike included unveiling a new community initiative branding and logo “Loving Hiking” with the tagline, challenge the body, renew the spirit. Participants received a fleece hoodie with the newly embroidered logo.
Flower Mound resident Roger Garrett (72 years young and energetic) was our outfitter and guide along with Chad Mustain who provided orienteering instruction from his current experience of section hiking the OT along with OK resident and Loving Community supporter Caleb Brown.
In January the weather is always the wild card and this year’s cold weather, in the high teens at night just added to the adventure and challenges to navigate. And that’s the way life works, right?
As I wound my way up and down the mountainside under the burden of a 43 pound pack, I pictured the faces of the boys and young men in our mentoring programs . I prayed for them in my tent at night, cold and wishing my sleeping bag had a lower temperature rating!
None of us gets to choose the starting points of our life’s journey. Most of our boys and young men daily face their own challenges — poverty, language barriers, discrimination, incarcerated family members, and very few male role models serving as guides in their lives.
I am proud of the men on our backpacking trip who showed resilience, strength, and endurance as they battled through some temporary inconveniences to raise money for a good cause. The camaraderie was sweet and the adventure is now theirs for a lifetime. Thank you for caring and supporting!
And I am equally proud of the men who mentor in our Boys2Men and Men of Distinction programs. Through their investment of time and influence they are making a difference. They are helping lighten the load on the road of life for another. Well done!
I am most proud of our boys and young men in our mentoring programs! Their daily endurance and effort to learn and grow and develop character and lead is truly inspiring. I know life is not often easy for them. However by putting one foot in front of the other and continuing forward, their determination is helping them travel far and to new heights!
Loving Community is always welcoming new mentors to walk with the children of our community. For more information on how to become a mentor contact Jim Mustain at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, you can make a tax deductible donation to support the mentoring programs of Loving Community at this link: https://loving-community.net/donation/
On the journey,