Former rowers will relay across the U.S. to raise money for Blue Planet Network and FARM-Africa
Kinetico Inc. announced its lead sponsorship of record-setting ocean rowers Katie Spotz and Sam Williams as they embark on an eight- to 12-day bicycle race across America. Spotz and Williams each rowed solo across the Atlantic Ocean in separate trips and decided to join forces this June for a 3,000-mile race across America. The purpose of the challenge, called Ride for Your Lives!, is to raise awareness and funds for an important water cause.
Over the past four years, Spotz and Williams have raised more than $150,000 for two charities, Blue Planet Network and FARM-Africa. Now the duo will join forces with the goal of raising $50,000 to fund a project bringing safe drinking water to pastoralist communities in drought-prone northern Kenya. This water will also help them to grow crops and support livestock so they do not have to rely on food aid.
From the moment the race starts on June 18 in Oceanside, Calif., the clock will keep ticking, 24 hours a day, until Spotz and Williams cross the finish line in Annapolis, Md. Relaying as they go and cycling through the night, their goal will be to set a new record by completing the race in less than seven days and 21 hours. Supporters can follow the journey and donate to the fundraising initiative via the website www.rideforyourlives.com .
“Kinetico is pleased to share the lead sponsorship of this adventure with the Levi’s brand, an organization with a long-standing commitment to global water issues to bring clean water to those in need,” said Toby Thomas, chief marking officer of Kinetico Inc. “We are supporting Katie and Sam in their exciting adventure and campaign to raise needed funds for two worthy organizations. We were a sponsor of Katie’s amazing ocean row and saw the impact she had increasing awareness of the world’s need for clean drinking water while raising over $100,000 to provide clean drinking water to those in need. Today Katie works for Kinetico in our marketing department and is continuing her role as a safe water advocate. We are proud of all that she has accomplished and we are looking forward to being a part of this new endeavor.”
Twenty-four-year-old Katie Spotz, from Mentor, Ohio, describes herself as having been the “benchwarmer” throughout her life, but on March 14, 2010, she landed her 19-ft rowboat in Guyana, South America, setting the world record as the youngest person to row solo across the Atlantic in 70 days, traveling 3,038 miles from her departure point in Senegal, West Africa. She raised money for the Blue Planet Network, a San Francisco-based non-profit that funds safe drinking water projects around the world. As interest grew in Spotz’ endeavor, donations began to come in. The total currently stands at more than $100,000.
Sam Williams, 27, of London, completed a solo unsupported row across the Atlantic Ocean in his 23-ft rowboat, “Pacific Pete,” from the Canary Islands, to Antigua. He completed the 3.750-mile journey in 75 days. Williams raised money for FARM-Africa, a charity supporting sustainable farming ventures in eastern Africa. With the support of the public and media in both the United Kingdom and U.S., around $50,000 was raised.